Researchers also found that those who turn up late and leave the office last are more likely to be overlooked for promotions.
"We think it's a cultural thing. Those who turn up early are thought of as hard workers, while if you turn up later, you're perceived as lazy," said Kai Chi Yam, who led the research at the University of Washington.
Researchers surveyed 149 pairs of employees and managers about when each arrived at work and how the manager rated the employee's conscientiousness and performance.
People who started later were rated worse, particularly when their managers were early risers. There was no evidence that people who went home early were seen as less productive.
In a second experiment, students took the role of a manager in a fictional scenario to rate staff performance, 'The Times' reported.
They were told that the employees' performances were identical but their start times varied. Late start times led to lower ratings, even though productivity and total hours were the same.
The study is to be published in the Journal of Applied Psychology.