"Assessing the Main and Spillover Effects of Seattle's Minimum Wage on Establishment Decisions" (with Sharada Dharmasankar) Accepted, Regional Science and Urban Economics
Presented at: PAA 2022 Annual Conference (poster), MEA 2022 Annual Conference, SOLE 2022
Abstract: We use the introduction of Seattle's local minimum wage to investigate the geographic effects of highly-targeted, city-level minimum wages on establishment entry and exit decisions. Ours is among the first papers to explicitly consider the spillover effects of city minimum wages on businesses in the surrounding areas, in addition to the main effect. We use an event study framework to estimate these effects on two low-wage industries: hospitality and retail. We find strong, statistically significant spillover effects on establishment entries at the census block level in the hospitality and retail sectors 1-2 years after Seattle's minimum wage is announced relative to establishment churn before the minimum wage announcement. There is a corresponding decline in entries for both sectors in Seattle itself. Our findings on exits are inconclusive. Both, spillover and main effects are more concentrated in retail. We estimate our effects using a novel data set containing a full census of establishments with precise locations for businesses in the state of Washington. Our findings suggest that spillover effects on neighboring areas should be considered to holistically assess the impacts of city-level minimum wages.
"The Effects of the Opioid Crisis on Employment: Evidence from Labor Market Flows" (with Anita Mukherjee and Daniel W. Sacks) Accepted, Journal of Human Resources
Media Coverage: HealthLawProf Blog
Abstract: We show that the opioid crisis slows transitions to employment from unemployment and non-participation, implying slower recovery from recessions. We identify the effect of the opioid crisis from cross-state variation in triplicate prescribing regulations, which produced long-lasting reductions in opioid use by reducing the initial distribution of the blockbuster opioid OxyContin. Difference-in-differences estimates show that triplicate regulations induce unemployed and non-participating workers in triplicate states to return to employment about 10 percent faster than workers in non-triplicate states. These estimates imply a 1.1 percentage point higher level of employment in steady state, and faster recovery from negative employment shocks. The protective effects of triplicate regulation appear across demographic groups, with larger effects for those working in physically demanding occupations.
"Wages, Task Type Amenity, and Job Mobility" [Field Paper]
Presented at: 2022 MEA Annual Conference
Abstract: This paper aims to study the importance of task type amenity in workers’ utility and in their job switching decisions. I use the Korean Labor and Income Panel Study exploiting stated preference data about task type. I find some descriptive evidence that task type amenity matters in workers’ job choosing decisions. I then set up a dynamic and partial equilibrium model of wages, task type amenity, and mobility decisions with search frictions to estimate the joint distribution of job match quality for wages and job match quality for task type amenity. Workers face about 1.5 times greater dispersion in task type match quality than that in wage match quality, which implies that task type amenity should not be neglected in workers’ utility. Additionally, job match quality for wage and job match quality for task type amenity are positively correlated on the distribution.
Work In Progress
"Move in and Get Paid? The Welfare Consequences of Remote Worker Relocation Programs"
Media Coverage: Cardinal News
Presented at: 2021 Wisconsin Economics Association Conference, 2022 MEA Annual Conference, 2022 WEAI Conference, 2022 UEA North American Meeting, 2022 SMU-Jinan Conference on Urban and Regional Economics, LERA@ASSA 2023 Meeting (LERA Best Papers III: The Changing Geography and Nature of Work)