Working Paper

Work from Home After the COVID-19 Outbreak


Abstract: Based on rich novel survey data on almost 5,000 working age adults, we document that 35.2 percent of the workforce worked entirely from home in May 2020, up from 8.2 percent in February 2020. Highly educated, high-income and white individuals were much more likely to shift to remote work and to maintain employment following the virus outbreak. Using available estimates of the potential number of home-based workers suggests that a large majority (71.7 percent) of U.S. workers that could work from home, effectively did so in May. We provide some evidence indicating that apart from the potential for home-based work, industry business conditions and labor demand also mattered for employment outcomes following the virus outbreak.

Keywords: COVID-19; working from home; telecommuting; social distancing; employment;

JEL Classification: J1; J2; J22; I18; R4;

https://doi.org/10.24149/wp2017

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Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas

Part of Series: Working Papers

Publication Date: 2020-06-23

Number: 2017

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