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Food Security and Teenage Labor Supply

Sarah Hamersma & Matthew Kim

Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, February 2016

Sarah Hamersma

Sarah Hamersma

This study assesses whether teenage labor force participation may influence the food security of children in their families. The authors utilize the Current Population Survey annual Food Security Supplement and linked monthly core data from 2001 through 2012 to assess the year-to-year dynamics of food security status in families with teenagers. They estimate the effect of teenage employment on food security while controlling for all time-invariant individual and household characteristics using a fixed-effects model. The authors find that an employed teen reduces the predicted probability of a family's children having very low food security by an economically and statistically significant 50 percent.