The Effect of Obesity on Wages and Employment: The Difference Between Having a High BMI and Being Fat
In this paper, we re-examine the relationship between overweight and labour market success, using indicators of individual body composition along with BMI (Body Mass Index). We use the dataset from Finland in which weight, height, fat mass and waist circumference are not self-reported, but obtained as part of the overall health examination. We find that waist circumference, but not weight or fat mass, has a negative effect on wages for women, whereas all measures of obesity have negative effects on women’s employment probabilities. For men, the only obesity measure that is significant for men’s employment probabilities is fat mass. One interpretation of our findings is that the negative wage effects of overweight on wages run through the discrimination channel, but that the negative effects of overweight on employment have more to do with ill health. All in all, measures of body composition provide a more refined picture about the effects of obesity on wages and employment.
|Date of creation:||13 Jun 2007|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +358-9-431 331
Fax: +358-9-431 33 333
Web page: http://www.hanken.fi
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Hamermesh, Daniel S & Biddle, Jeff E, 1994.
"Beauty and the Labor Market,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1174-94, December.
- Giorgio Brunello & Beatrice d'Hombres, 2006.
"Does Body Weight affect Wages? Evidence from Europe,"
"Marco Fanno" Working Papers
0027, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche "Marco Fanno".
- Brunello, Giorgio & D'Hombres, Beatrice, 2007. "Does body weight affect wages?: Evidence from Europe," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 1-19, March.
- Nicola Persico & Andrew Postlewaite & Dan Silverman, 2004.
"The Effect of Adolescent Experience on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Height,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 1019-1053, October.
- Nicola Persico & Andrew Postlewaite & Dan Silverman, 2004. "The Effect of Adolescent Experience on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Height," NBER Working Papers 10522, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Nicola Persico & Andrew Postlewaite & Dan Silverman, 2003. "The Effect of Adolescent Experience on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Height," PIER Working Paper Archive 03-036, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
- John Cawley & Sheldon Danziger, 2005. "Morbid obesity and the transition from welfare to work," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(4), pages 727-743.
- Cawley, John H. & Grabka, Markus M. & Lillard, Dean R., 2005.
"A Comparison of the Relationship between Obesity and Earnings in the U.S. and Germany,"
EconStor Open Access Articles,
ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 119-129.
- John Cawley & Markus M. Grabka & Dean R. Lillard, 2005. "A Comparison of the Relationship between Obesity and Earnings in the U.S. and Germany," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 125(1), pages 119-129.
- Hübler, Olaf, 2006. "The Nonlinear Link between Height and Wages: An Empirical Investigation," IZA Discussion Papers 2394, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Burkhauser, Richard V. & Cawley, John, 2008.
"Beyond BMI: The value of more accurate measures of fatness and obesity in social science research,"
Journal of Health Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 519-529, March.
- John Cawley & Richard V. Burkhauser, 2006. "Beyond BMI: The Value of More Accurate Measures of Fatness and Obesity in Social Science Research," NBER Working Papers 12291, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Charles L. Baum & William F. Ford, 2004. "The wage effects of obesity: a longitudinal study," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(9), pages 885-899.
- Greve, Jane, 2007. "Obesity and Labor Market Outcomes: New Danish Evidence," Working Papers 07-13, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
- John Cawley, 2004. "The Impact of Obesity on Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hhb:hanken:0528. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Staffan Dellringer)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.