Leisure Luxuries and the Labor Supply of Young Men


Aguiar, Mark, et al. “Leisure Luxuries and the Labor Supply of Young Men”. Working Paper. Web.


Since 2004, time-use data show that younger men, ages 21 to 30, shifted their leisure sharply to video gaming and other recreational computer activities. Over the same period, these younger men exhibited a larger decline in work hours than older men or women. We propose a framework to answer whether improved leisure technology affected younger men's labor supply.  The starting point is a leisure demand system that parallels that often estimated for consumer expenditures.  We show that total leisure demand is especially sensitive to innovations in leisure luxuries, that is, activities that display a disproportionate response to changes in total leisure time.  Using cross-region variation, we estimate that gaming/recreational computer use is distinctly a leisure luxury for younger men.  We calculate that innovations to gaming/recreational computing reduced younger men's labor supply by 1.5 to 3.1 percent since 2004. That would explain 23 to 46 percent of their decline in market hours over the period. 

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Last updated on 02/20/2018