Direct and Indirect Effects of Teenage Body Weight on Adult Wages
AbstractPrevious estimates on the association between body weight and wages in the literature have been contingent on education and occupation. This paper examines the direct effect of BMI on wages and the indirect effects operating through education and occupation choice, particularly for late-teen BMI and adult wages. Using the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 data, we show that education is the main pathway for the indirect BMI wage penalty. The total BMI wage penalty is underestimated by 18% for women without including those indirect effects. Whereas for men there is no statistically significant direct BMI wage penalty, we do observe a small indirect wage penalty through education.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 15027.
Date of creation: Jun 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Econ Hum Biol. 2011 Dec;9(4):381-92. doi: 10.1016/j.ehb.2011.07.002. Epub 2011 Jul 19. Direct and indirect effects of body weight on adult wages. Han E, Norton EC, Powell LM.
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
- J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2009-06-17 (All new papers)
- NEP-HEA-2009-06-17 (Health Economics)
- NEP-LAB-2009-06-17 (Labour Economics)
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