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Do Minimum Wages Really Increase Youth Drinking and Drunk Driving?

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  • Laura Argys
  • M. Melinda Pitts
  • Joseph J. Sabia

Abstract

Adams, Blackburn, and Cotti (ABC) found that increases in minimum wages were positively related to drunk driving?related traffic fatalities for those ages 16 to 20. The hypothesized mechanism for this relationship?increased alcohol consumption caused by minimum wage?induced income gains?remains empirically unexplored. Using data from two national behavioral surveys and an identification strategy identical to ABC, we find little evidence that an increase in the minimum wage leads to increases in alcohol consumption or drunk driving among teenagers. These results suggest a much smaller set of plausible causal channels to explain ABC's findings.

Suggested Citation

  • Laura Argys & M. Melinda Pitts & Joseph J. Sabia, 2014. "Do Minimum Wages Really Increase Youth Drinking and Drunk Driving?," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2014-20, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedawp:2014-20
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Michael R. Strain & Peter Brummund, 2016. "Real and permanent minimum wages," AEI Economics Working Papers 875967, American Enterprise Institute.
    2. Brady P. Horn & Johanna Catherine Maclean & Michael R. Strain, 2017. "Do Minimum Wage Increases Influence Worker Health?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 55(4), pages 1986-2007, October.
    3. Joseph J. Sabia & Thanh Tam Nguyen & Oren Rosenberg, 2017. "High School Physical Education Requirements and Youth Body Weight: New Evidence from the YRBS," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(10), pages 1291-1306, October.
    4. Dasgupta Kabir & Pacheco Gail, 2018. "Warrantless Arrest Laws for Domestic Violence: How Are Youth Affected?," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 18(1), pages 1-20, January.
    5. Pohl, R. Vincent & Clark, Kathryn L. & Thomas, Ryan C., 2017. "Minimum Wages and Healthy Diet," MPRA Paper 87239, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Lucas Hafner & Benjamin Lochner, 2022. "Do minimum wages improve self-rated health? Evidence from a natural experiment," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 62(6), pages 2989-3014, June.
    7. Susan L. Averett & Julie K. Smith & Yang Wang, 2017. "The effects of minimum wages on the health of working teenagers," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(16), pages 1127-1130, September.
    8. D. Mark Anderson & Sina Sandholt, 2019. "Are Booster Seats More Effective than Child Safety Seats or Seat Belts at Reducing Traffic Fatalities among Children?," American Journal of Health Economics, MIT Press, vol. 5(1), pages 42-64, Winter.
    9. Kabir Dasgupta, 2019. "Youth response to state cyberbullying laws," New Zealand Economic Papers, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 53(2), pages 184-202, May.
    10. Jiwei Chen, 2021. "Do minimum wage increases benefit worker health? Evidence from China," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 19(2), pages 473-499, June.
    11. Hafner, Lucas, 2019. "Do minimum wages improve self-rated health? Evidence from a natural experiment," FAU Discussion Papers in Economics 02/2019, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Institute for Economics.
    12. Sabia, Joseph J. & Bass, Brittany, 2015. "Do Anti-Bullying Laws Reduce Youth Violence?," IZA Discussion Papers 9201, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    minimum wages; teen drunk driving; alcohol consumption;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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