NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Jonas Y. Jin

Dept. of Economics
Princeton University
Julis Romo Rabinowitz building

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Princeton University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

March 2018U.S. Employment and Opioids: Is There a Connection?
with Janet Currie, Molly Schnell: w24440
This paper uses quarterly county-level data from 2006–2014 to examine the direction of causality in the relationship between per capita opioid prescription rates and employment-to-population ratios. We first estimate models of the effect of per capita opioid prescription rates on employment-to-population ratios, instrumenting opioid prescriptions for younger ages using opioid prescriptions to the elderly. We find that the estimated effect of opioids on employment-to-population ratios is positive but small for women, while there is no relationship for men. We then estimate models of the effect of employment-to-population ratios on opioid prescription rates using a shift-share instrument, and find ambiguous results. Overall, our findings suggest that there is no simple causal relationship be...
 
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