"Leading the way are the Benelux countries (Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg), which outperform the US based on gross domestic product per hours worked each year. According to the OECD, Belgium and the Netherlands, which mandate 30 and 28 annual vacation days, respectively, are almost 2 percent more productive than the US. And Luxembourg, with its highly competitive financial services industry and 32-day yearly vacation allowance, is a staggering 27 percent more efficient.
Even France proves it can compete with America's world-leading economic productivity. By focusing on high-value manufacturing, France is a mere 2 percent less productive than the U.S., based on the OECD's analysis of GDP per hours worked. That comes despite the French taking 40 days off a year, and working, on average, 37 hours a week. And in Germany, Europe's largest economy, productivity is only 7 percent behind that of America, predominantly because of the country's export-oriented manufacturing sector. The Germans also work five fewer hours per week than their US counterparts, take five more days vacation each year, and have an unemployment rate almost two percentage points lower than the comparable US figure.