Groundbreaking Daylight Saving Time Economic Report Released with Integrated Media, Interactive and Facebook Consumer Outreach
RICHMOND, Va., March 4, 2013 – Carpenter Co. and Sleepbetter.org asked a team of economists to estimate the total burden of the lost hour of sleep due to daylight saving time (DST) on the U.S. economy and today launched a multichannel messaging campaign to share its surprising results. According to the SleepBetter.org Lost-Hour Economic Index, made public today, moving the clock ahead one hour each spring (March 10this year) inflicts nearly half a billion dollars ($434 million) in total losses on the U.S. economy. In addition to quantifying the national impact of DST, the index was broken down into more than 360 metropolitan statistical areas (MSA) in order to localize its impact — from the top market, New York, NY, down to the smallest MSA, Carson City, NV.
In order to share this wealth of data, SleepBetter.org launched an interactive landing page that allows visitors to view the cost of DST down to the city level. The site will include a searchable database, sleep tips to combat the effects of the lost hour of sleep and an interactive heat map which plots the per-capita costs of DST from red to blue across America’s metropolitan areas. The landing page can be accessed here: www.sleepbetter.org/lost-hour/
“Every year most of the U.S. voluntarily foregoes an hour of sleep as we spring forward into daylight saving time, and the surprising findings of the Lost-Hour Economic Index reinforce the key message of our multiyear campaign to educate Americans about the importance of sleeping better — lost sleep has a cost,” said Dan Schecter, senior vice president of consumer products at Carpenter Co. and creator of SleepBetter.org. “As various academic studies have shown, that missing hour of sleep has both physiological and psychological effects – effects that can lead to an increase in workplace injury, cyberloafing and even heart attacks, and a relatively small investment sleep can pay huge dividends in health, productivity and well-being.”
Today also marks the launch of a companion engagement contest on the SleepBetter Facebook page, www.Facebook.com/SleepBetter. The contest asks new and existing Facebook fans to share the effects of losing an hour of sleep in their lives for a chance to win a Carpenter Co. and SleepBetter state-of-the- art ErgoSmart™ line of toppers and pillows. SleepBetter is also broadcasting the results of the study to national, regional, and local media and to its nearly quarter million Facebook fans, tens of thousands of e-newsletter subscribers and through its other social media outlets.
The metrics behind the index were developed by Chmura Economics & Analytics, a Richmond, Va.-based firm that provides economic consulting, quantitative research and software solutions to a range of private and public entities. Chmura drew data from three previously published academic studies: (1) a 2008 study from The New England Journal of Medicine that examined the effects of daylight saving time on incidence of heart attacks; (2) a 2009 study from The Journal of Applied Psychology, which measured the incidence of workplace injury in the mining and construction industries in the days following the change to daylight saving time; and (3) a 2012 study also published in The Journal of Applied Psychology that examined the increases in cyberloafing on the Monday after the switch to daylight saving time.
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These are the findings of Chmura Economics & Analytics in a study entitled “Estimating the Economic Loss of Daylight Saving Time for U.S. Metropolitan Statistical Areas” commissioned by the Carpenter Co. The study focused on only the aspects of economic losses where solid evidence from peer-reviewed academic journals could be obtained, showing how the DST change can lead to an increase in heart attacks, workplace injuries in the mining and construction sectors, and increased cyberloafing that reduces productivity for people who typically work in offices. A reasonable economic cost was then developed from the economic costs of heart attacks, workplace accidents and cyberloafing and applied to the more than 300 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) in the U.S.
Created by Carpenter Co., SleepBetter.org is dedicated to helping people sleep better. Designed as an online resource, the website creates a forum for visitors to define, discuss and discover solutions to fit their particular sleep needs. SleepBetter.org’s quest is to continually gather pertinent sleep information, then share this knowledge with the general public. The site also shares tips on the best sleep-related products, both in stores and online. SleepBetter.org has created the SleepBetter seal as a way to easily identify products recommended for their superior quality or scientifically based design. For more information, please visit www.SleepBetter.org.