Smoking, Obesity, and Labor Market Outcomes

Author Name MORIKAWA Masayuki (Vice President, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. March 2018 18-J-010
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This study, using original survey data, presents evidence in Japan on the relationship between smoking and obesity on the one hand, and labor market outcomes and subjective well-being on the other hand. According to the results, first, after accounting for various individual characteristics, wages of both male and female smokers are significantly higher than those of non-smokers. This unexpected finding is different from past studies and general perception. In addition, the labor participation rate of smokers is higher than that of non-smokers. Second, there is a wage discount for obesity only among male workers. This is also an unexpected finding, as a large number of past studies have detected wage discounts for obese females. Third, smoking and obesity are associated with low life satisfaction and job satisfaction among females, but the relationships are unclear among males.

The English version of this paper is 18-E-023