The impact of problem drinking on employment

Weiwei Feng, Wei Zhou, J. S. Butler, Brenda M. Booth, Michael French

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Social cost studies report that alcohol use and misuse impose a great economic burden on society, and over half of the total economic costs are estimated to be due to the loss of work productivity. Controversy remains, however, as to the magnitude and direction of the effects of alcohol consumption on productivity. Furthermore, most of the studies have looked at the relationship between problem drinking and wages. This paper investigates the impact of problem drinking on employment by analysing a random sample of men and women of prime working age from six Southern states in the US (Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee). The data set contains 4898 females and 3224 males, with information on both employment and problem drinking. To eliminate the bias that may result from single-equation estimation, we used a bivariate probit model to control for possible correlation in the unobservable factors that affect both problem drinking and employment. We find no significant negative association between problem drinking and employment for both men and women, controlling for other covariates. The findings are consistent with other research and highlight several methodological issues. Furthermore, the study suggests that estimates of the costs of problem drinking may be overstated owing to misleading labour supply relationships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)509-521
Number of pages13
JournalHealth Economics
Volume10
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

Fingerprint

Drinking
Costs and Cost Analysis
productivity
Economics
Working Women
Mississippi
labor supply
Salaries and Fringe Benefits
social costs
costs
alcohol consumption
Alcohol Drinking
random sample
economics
wage
alcohol
Alcohols
trend
Research
Productivity

Keywords

  • Cost
  • Employment
  • Problem drinking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Health(social science)
  • Health Professions(all)

Cite this

Feng, W., Zhou, W., Butler, J. S., Booth, B. M., & French, M. (2001). The impact of problem drinking on employment. Health Economics, 10(6), 509-521. https://doi.org/10.1002/hec.611

The impact of problem drinking on employment. / Feng, Weiwei; Zhou, Wei; Butler, J. S.; Booth, Brenda M.; French, Michael.

In: Health Economics, Vol. 10, No. 6, 2001, p. 509-521.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Feng, W, Zhou, W, Butler, JS, Booth, BM & French, M 2001, 'The impact of problem drinking on employment', Health Economics, vol. 10, no. 6, pp. 509-521. https://doi.org/10.1002/hec.611
Feng, Weiwei ; Zhou, Wei ; Butler, J. S. ; Booth, Brenda M. ; French, Michael. / The impact of problem drinking on employment. In: Health Economics. 2001 ; Vol. 10, No. 6. pp. 509-521.
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