Time is money, professor proves
WARWICK, England (CNN) -- A mathematical formula calculated by a British university professor has found that time actually is money.
According to the equation, the average British minute is worth just over 10 pence (15 cents) to men and eight pence (12 cents) to women.
The formula is: V=(W((100-t)/100))/C, where V is the value of an hour, W is a person's hourly wage, t is the tax rate and C is the local cost of living.
It shows that there is no such thing as a free lunch or even a free dinner, while brushing your teeth for three minutes uses up 30 pence (45 cents) in "lost" time, and washing a car by hand has a hidden cost of £3 ($4.50).
Economics professor Ian Walker, of central England's Warwick University, says process can show people just how valuable their time is in relation to any task they have to perform, from a lie-in or cooking a meal to sleeping and working.
He says it also allows people to work out whether they are getting a fair rate for overtime, as well as helping them to decide whether it is worth spending extra cash to save time.
It can judge the financial cost of a takeaway against the time taken to cook dinner, or the relative benefits of using a taxi or saving with the bus.
In Britain, the formula means that an hour for a man on average earnings is worth £6.16 ($8.99), while the average woman's time is worth £4.87 ($7.10) per hour.
The study found that the typical cost of cooking dinner, including the value of time spent and the value of the ingredients, was £10.77 ($15.72) for men and £9.81 ($14.30) for women.
The average cost of ordering a take away meal was £5.01 ($7.31) for men and £4.96 ($7.24) for women.
Walker said: "This research is the first of its kind to take into account the overall picture of how highly our time is being valued.
"Traditionally, wages or salaries have given an indication of how we are valued at work, however, by looking at salaries against taxation, the cost of living and regional variations, we can see how much an hour of our time is worth whether at work or home.
"What this helps us understand is that as the value of our time rises, we are likely to buy more of it, which explains why people are paying to save time, like having someone to cut the lawn or clean the house."
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