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Work out or out of work -- The labor market return to physical fitness and leisure sports activities

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  • Rooth, Dan-Olof
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    Abstract

    This study is the first to present evidence of the return to leisure sports in the job hiring process by sending fictitious applications to real job openings in the Swedish labor market. In the field experiment job applicants were randomly given different information about their type and level of leisure sports. Applicants who signaled sports skills had a significantly higher callback rate of about 2 percentage points, and this effect was about twice as large for physically demanding occupations. Additional evidence of a sports premium in the regular labor market is arrived at when analyzing the long-run impact of physical fitness on later labor market outcomes. The analysis uses register data on adult earnings and physical fitness when enlisting at age 18. The fitness premium, net of unobservable family variables, is in the order of 4-5%, but diminishes to 2% when controlling for non-cognitive skills.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Labour Economics.

    Volume (Year): 18 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 3 (June)
    Pages: 399-409

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:18:y:2011:i:3:p:399-409

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/labeco

    Related research

    Keywords: Leisure sports Physical fitness Cardiovascular fitness Correspondence testing Earnings;

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    Cited by:
    1. repec:hal:wpaper:halshs-00875305 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Lechner, Michael & Sari, Nazmi, 2014. "Labor market effects of sports and exercise: Evidence from Canadian panel data," CEPR Discussion Papers 9851, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Petter Lundborg & Anton Nilsson & Dan-Olof Rooth, 2014. "Parental Education and Offspring Outcomes: Evidence from the Swedish Compulsory School Reform," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(1), pages 253-78, January.
    4. Charlotte Cabane & Andrew E. Clark, 2013. "Childhood Sporting Activities and Adult Labour-Market Outcomes," CEP Discussion Papers dp1253, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    5. Torberg Falch & Ole Henning Nyhus & Bjarne Strøm, 2013. "Performance of Young Adults: The Importance of Different Skills," CESifo Working Paper Series 4124, CESifo Group Munich.
    6. Yamamura, Eiji, 2014. "Is body mass human capital in sumo? Outcome of globalization and formation of human capital in Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 53-71.
    7. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00639469 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Eriksson, Stefan & Rooth, Dan-Olof, 2011. "Do Employers Use Unemployment as a Sorting Criterion When Hiring? Evidence from a Field Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 6235, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Hyytinen, Ari & Lahtonen, Jukka, 2013. "The effect of physical activity on long-term income," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 129-137.

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