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Crime and the Timing of Work

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  • Hamermesh, Daniel S.

Abstract

Two striking facts describe work timing in the United States: a lower propensity to work evenings and nights in large metropolitan areas, and a secular decline in such work since 1973. One explanation is higher and possibly increasing crime in large areas. I link Current Population Survey data on work timing to FBI crime reports. Neither fact is explained by changes in nor inter-area differences in crime rates, but higher homicide rates do reduce such work. This reduction implicitly costs the economy between $4 and $10 billion. This negative externality illustrates a larger class of previously unmeasured costs of social pathologies.
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Suggested Citation

  • Hamermesh, Daniel S., 1999. "Crime and the Timing of Work," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 311-330, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:45:y:1999:i:2:p:311-330
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce Sacerdote & José A. Scheinkman, 1996. "Crime and Social Interactions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(2), pages 507-548.
    2. Henderson, J. Vernon, 1981. "The economics of staggered work hours," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 349-364, May.
    3. Viscusi, W Kip, 1993. "The Value of Risks to Life and Health," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(4), pages 1912-1946, December.
    4. Hamermesh, Daniel S, 1999. "The Timing of Work over Time," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(452), pages 37-66, January.
    5. Kostiuk, Peter F, 1990. "Compensating Differentials for Shift Work," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages 1054-1075, October.
    6. Edward J. Schumacher & Barry T. Hirsch, 1997. "Compensating Differentials and Unmeasured Ability in the Labor Market for Nurses: Why Do Hospitals Pay More?," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 50(4), pages 557-579, July.
    7. Ian Ayres & Steven D. Levitt, 1998. "Measuring Positive Externalities from Unobservable Victim Precaution: An Empirical Analysis of Lojack," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(1), pages 43-77.
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    Cited by:

    1. Braakmann, Nils, 2013. "Crime, health and wellbeing – Longitudinal evidence from Mexico," MPRA Paper 44885, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. David Albouy & Bert Lue, 2014. "Driving to Opportunity: Local Rents, Wages, Commuting Costs and Sub-Metropolitan Quality of Life," NBER Working Papers 19922, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Eaton, B.Curtis & Wen, Jean-François, 2008. "Myopic deterrence policies and the instability of equilibria," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 65(3-4), pages 609-624, March.
    4. Cheng, Zhiming & Smyth, Russell, 2015. "Crime victimization, neighborhood safety and happiness in China," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 424-435.
    5. Allen, W. David, 2013. "Self-protection against crime victimization: Theory and evidence from university campuses," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 21-33.
    6. Abdurrahim EMHAN, 2011. "The Effects of Terror and Violence on Entrepreneurs in the Eastern and South-eastern Regions of Turkey: A Field Research," Sosyoekonomi Journal, Sosyoekonomi Society, issue 16(16).
    7. Braakmann, Nils, 2012. "The link between non-property crime and house prices – Evidence from UK street-level data," MPRA Paper 44884, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Janke, K. & Propper, C. & Shields, M.A., 2013. "Does Violent Crime Deter Physical Activity?," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 13/26, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
    9. Renata Villoro & Graciela Teruel, 2004. "The social costs of crime in Mexico city and suburban areas," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 19(1), pages 3-44.
    10. Albouy, David & Lue, Bert, 2015. "Driving to opportunity: Local rents, wages, commuting, and sub-metropolitan quality of life," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 74-92.
    11. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Caitlin Knowles Myers & Mark L. Pocock, 2008. "Cues for Timing and Coordination: Latitude, Letterman, and Longitude," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(2), pages 223-246, April.
    12. Rodrigo R. Soares, 2003. "The Welfare Cost of Violence (New Version: Corrected Calculations)," Law and Economics 0312003, EconWPA, revised 13 Sep 2004.
    13. Braakmann, Nils, 2012. "How do individuals deal with victimization and victimization risk? Longitudinal evidence from Mexico," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 335-344.
    14. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Caitlin Knowles Myers & Mark L. Pocock, 2006. "Time Zones As Cues For Coordination: Latitude, Longitude, And Letterman," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 0609, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
    15. repec:eee:touman:v:60:y:2017:i:c:p:257-269 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Soares, Rodrigo R., 2006. "The welfare cost of violence across countries," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 821-846, September.
    17. Braakmann, Nils, 2009. "Is there a compensating wage differential for high crime levels? First evidence from Europe," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 218-231, November.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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