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The Effect of Gambling on Health: Evidence from Canada

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Author Info

  • Humphreys, Brad

    ()
    (University of Alberta, Department of Economics)

  • Nyman, John

    (University of Minnesota)

  • Ruseski, Jane

    (University of Alberta, Department of Economics)

Abstract

The relationship between gambling and health has important economic and public policy implications. We develop causal evidence about the relationship between recreational gambling and health using data from the Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) cycles 2.1, 3.1 and 4.1. Recreational gamblers are gamblers who are classifi ed as "non-problem" gamblers according to the Canadian Problem Gambling Index (CPGI). Gambling is treated as an endogenous regressor in the health equations. The results of instrumental variable and bivariate probit models of participation in gambling and health outcomes indicate that recreational gambling has either no or a negative impact on the probability of having certain chronic conditions. These results diff er from studies that find a positive association between problem gambling and adverse health outcomes. Exogeneity tests suggest that gambling is endogenous; hence, empirical methods that address endogeneity are necessary to develop causal evidence of a relationship between gambling and health.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Alberta, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2011-18.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: 01 Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ris:albaec:2011_018

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Keywords: health; government policy; sports; gambling; recreation; tourism;

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  1. Lindrooth, Richard C. & Weisbrod, Burton A., 2007. "Do religious nonprofit and for-profit organizations respond differently to financial incentives? The hospice industry," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 342-357, March.
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  6. Huang, Haifang & Humphreys, Brad R., 2012. "Sports participation and happiness: Evidence from US microdata," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 776-793.
  7. Nyman, John A. & Welte, John W. & Dowd, Bryan E., 2008. "Something for nothing: A model of gambling behavior," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 2492-2504, December.
  8. Milton Friedman & L. J. Savage, 1948. "The Utility Analysis of Choices Involving Risk," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56, pages 279.
  9. Chiara Monfardini & Rosalba Radice, 2008. "Testing Exogeneity in the Bivariate Probit Model: A Monte Carlo Study," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 70(2), pages 271-282, 04.
  10. Terza, Joseph V. & Basu, Anirban & Rathouz, Paul J., 2008. "Two-stage residual inclusion estimation: Addressing endogeneity in health econometric modeling," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 531-543, May.
  11. Jeff DeSimone, 2002. "Illegal Drug Use and Employment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(4), pages 952-977, October.
  12. Conlisk, John, 1993. " The Utility of Gambling," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 255-75, June.
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