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Obesity, disability, and the labor force

Author

Listed:
  • Kristin F. Butcher
  • Kyung-Hong Park

Abstract

Men of prime working age have increased their non-employment rates over the past 30 years, and disability rates have also increased. Many have noted that this increase has happened against a backdrop of generally improving health in the U.S. population. However, obesity has increased substantially over this period. The authors find that changes in the characteristics of male workers—including age, race, ethnicity, and obesity levels—can explain a large portion (around 40 percent) of the increase in non-employment.

Suggested Citation

  • Kristin F. Butcher & Kyung-Hong Park, 2008. "Obesity, disability, and the labor force," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q I, pages 2-16.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedhep:y:2008:i:qi:p:2-16:n:v.32no.1
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    File URL: http://www.chicagofed.org/digital_assets/publications/economic_perspectives/2008/ep_1qtr2008_part1_butcher_park.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Oaxaca, Ronald, 1973. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 14(3), pages 693-709, October.
    2. Anderson Katharine & Barrow Lisa & Butcher Kristin F., 2005. "Implications of Changes in Men's and Women's Labor Force Participation for Real Compensation Growth and Inflation," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-27, March.
    3. Daniel Aaronson & Kyung-Hong Park & Daniel G. Sullivan, 2006. "The decline in teen labor force participation," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q I, pages 2-18.
    4. John Cawley & Sheldon Danziger, 2004. "Obesity as a Barrier to the Transition from Welfare to Work," NBER Working Papers 10508, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Keywords

    Obesity ; Unemployment;

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