What do unemployed do all day? Not much, study finds

What do unemployed people do all day? Do they sit around, collecting a government check, living a life of leisure? Or are they hard at work trying to find work? What exactly do they do with all of that free time since they're no longer working?

They lay around and file their nails, of course.

At least that's the basics of a recent paper by the National Bureau of Economic Research, which found that the unemployed spend their time in leisure and personal maintenance. When there's a recession, however, they're spending most of it doing household chores.

Before I get on a rant about what I've been doing during my six months of unemployment, and how I'm doing anything but enjoying it as much as a trip to Hawaii, let's get back to the research by these economists.

Using diaries that they gave to the unemployed to write down exactly what they were doing every minute of the day (which is work by itself), the researchers found that they didn't do any more household work than employed people. Again, this is happening when the country isn't in a recession and unemployment is extremely high.