time is money

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Generally attributed to Benjamin Franklin. See 1748 quotation.


time is money

  1. Money is wasted (in lost wages, missed opportunities, etc.) when a person's time is not used productively; time is valuable and should not be wasted.
    • 1748, Benjamin Franklin, “Advice to a young Tradesman, written by an old One”, in George Fisher, editor, The American Instructor: or Young Man’s Best Companion, ninth edition:
      Remember that Time is Money. He that can earn Ten Shillings a Day by his Labour, and goes abroad, or sits idle one half of that Day, tho’ he spends but Sixpence during his Diversion or Idleness, ought not to reckon That the only Expence; he has really spent or rather thrown away Five Shillings besides.
    • 1823, James Fenimore Cooper, chapter 14, in The Pioneers:
      And what do you mean to do with your time this winter? You must remember that time is money.
    • 1919, Eleanor H. Porter, chapter 31, in Dawn:
      His words and manner carried the crisp terseness of the busy man whose time is money.


Further reading[edit]

  • “Time is Money. Benjamin Franklin?”, in Quote Investigator[1], May 14, 2010