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Long Term Effects of Minimum Legal Drinking Age Laws on Adult Alcohol Use and Driving Fatalities

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  • Robert Kaestner
  • Benjamin Yarnoff

Abstract

We examine whether adult alcohol consumption and traffic fatalities are associated with the legal drinking environment when a person was between the ages of 18 and 20. We find that moving from an environment in which a person was never allowed to drink legally to one in which a person could always drink legally was associated with a 20 to 30 percent increase in alcohol consumption and a ten percent increase in fatal accidents for adult males. There were no statistically significant or practically important associations between the legal drinking environment when young and adult female alcohol consumption and driving fatalities.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 15439.

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Date of creation: Oct 2009
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Publication status: published as Robert Kaestner & Benjamin Yarnoff, 2011. "Long-Term Effects of Minimum Legal Drinking Age Laws on Adult Alcohol Use and Driving Fatalities," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 325 - 363.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15439

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  1. Becker, Gary S & Murphy, Kevin M, 1988. "A Theory of Rational Addiction," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(4), pages 675-700, August.
  2. Kevin M. Murphy & Robert H. Topel, 2006. "The Value of Health and Longevity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(5), pages 871-904, October.
  3. Miron, Jeffrey A. & Tetelbaum, Elina, 2009. "Does the Minimum Legal Drinking Age Save Lives?," Scholarly Articles 4319664, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. R. Kaestner, 2000. "A note on the effect of minimum drinking age laws on youth alcohol consumption," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(3), pages 315-325, 07.
  5. Ted O'Donoghue and Matthew Rabin., 2000. "Risky Behavior Among Youths: Some Issues from Behavioral Economics," Economics Working Papers, University of California at Berkeley E00-285, University of California at Berkeley.
  6. Aigner, Dennis J., 1973. "Regression with a binary independent variable subject to errors of observation," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 49-59, March.
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Cited by:
  1. Clifford Winston, 2013. "On the Performance of the U.S. Transportation System: Caution Ahead," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(3), pages 773-824, September.

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