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A note on the effect of minimum drinking age laws on youth alcohol consumption

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  • R. Kaestner

Abstract

This study uses data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to investigate the effect of minimum drinking age laws (MDALs) on youth alcohol consumption. Two considerations motivated the analysis. First, results from previous studies provide conflicting evidence of the effect of MDALs on alcohol consumption. Second, all previous studies of the effects of MDALs on alcohol consumption have failed to control for unmeasured time-varying state effects. This study addresses this latter issue by using a difference-in-differences-in-differences (DDD) methodology. The results of this study were mixed. On the one hand, a preponderance of estimates of the effect of MDALs on alcohol consumption are negative, although many are not significantly different from zero. On the other hand, estimates of the effect of MDALs differ by gender and exhibit some variation across samples and methods. In the end, I believe the estimates presented in this article are not sufficient to draw a definitive conclusion and suggest the need for additional research. Copyright 2000 Western Economic Association International.

Suggested Citation

  • 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, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:coecpo:v:18:y:2000:i:3:p:315-325
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Coate, Douglas & Grossman, Michael, 1988. "Effects of Alcoholic Beverage Prices and Legal Drinking Ages on Youth Alcohol Use," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(1), pages 145-171, April.
    2. Adit Laixuthai & Frank J. Chaloupka, 1993. "Youth Alcohol Use And Public Policy," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 11(4), pages 70-81, October.
    3. Dee, Thomas S., 1999. "State alcohol policies, teen drinking and traffic fatalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 289-315, May.
    4. Kenkel, Donald S, 1993. "Drinking, Driving, and Deterrence: The Effectiveness and Social Costs of Alternative Policies," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(2), pages 877-913, October.
    5. Philip J. Cook & George Tauchen, 1984. "The Effect of Minimum Drinking Age Legislation on Youthful Auto Fatalities, 1970-1977," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(1), pages 169-190, January.
    6. Sloan, Frank A. & Reilly, Bridget A. & Schenzler, Christoph M., 1994. "Tort liability versus other approaches for deterring careless driving," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 53-71, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. 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.
    2. Jeffrey A. Miron & Elina Tetelbaum, 2009. "Does The Minimum Legal Drinking Age Save Lives?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 47(2), pages 317-336, April.
    3. Inna Cintina, 2015. "The effect of minimum drinking age laws on pregnancy, fertility, and alcohol consumption," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 1003-1022, December.
    4. Fertig, Angela R. & Watson, Tara, 2009. "Minimum drinking age laws and infant health outcomes," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 737-747, May.
    5. Christopher Carpenter & Carlos Dobkin, 2009. "The Effect of Alcohol Consumption on Mortality: Regression Discontinuity Evidence from the Minimum Drinking Age," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 164-182, January.
    6. Inna Cintina, 2011. "The Effect of Minimum Legal Drinking Age on the Incidence of First Pregnancy and Its Outcome," Working Papers 2011-6R, University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization, University of Hawaii at Manoa, revised Jun 2013.
    7. Sandra L. Decker & Dahlia K. Remler, 2004. "How Much Might Universal Health Insurance Reduce Socioeconomic Disparities in Health? A Comparison of the US and Canada," NBER Working Papers 10715, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Alan I. Barreca & Marianne E. Page, 2012. "A Pint for a Pound? Reevaluating the Relationship Between Minimum Drinking Age Laws and Birth Outcomes," Working Papers 1220, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
    9. Donald G. Freeman, 2007. "Drunk Driving Legislation And Traffic Fatalities: New Evidence On Bac 08 Laws," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 25(3), pages 293-308, July.
    10. Dee, Thomas S., 1999. "State alcohol policies, teen drinking and traffic fatalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 289-315, May.

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