Stature and long-term labor market outcomes : Evidence using Mendelian randomization
Böckerman, P., Viinikainen, J., Vainiomäki, J., Hintsanen, M., Pitkänen, N., Lehtimäki, T., Pehkonen, J., Rovio, S., & Raitakari, O. (2017). Stature and long-term labor market outcomes : Evidence using Mendelian randomization. Economics and Human Biology, 24, 18-29. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ehb.2016.10.009
Published inEconomics and Human Biology
© 2016 Elsevier B.V. This is a final draft version of an article whose final and definitive form has been published by Elsevier. Published in this repository with the kind permission of the publisher.
We use the Young Finns Study (N = ∼2000) on the measured height linked to register-based long-term labor market outcomes. The data contain six age cohorts (ages 3, 6, 9, 12, 15 and 18, in 1980) with the average age of 31.7, in 2001, and with the female share of 54.7. We find that taller people earn higher earnings according to the ordinary least squares (OLS) estimation. The OLS models show that 10 cm of extra height is associated with 13% higher earnings. We use Mendelian randomization, with the genetic score as an instrumental variable (IV) for height to account for potential confounders that are related to socioeconomic background, early life conditions and parental investments, which are otherwise very difficult to fully account for when using covariates in observational studies. The IV point estimate is much lower and not statistically significant, suggesting that the OLS estimation provides an upward biased estimate for the height premium. Our results show the potential value of using genetic information to gain new insights into the determinants of long-term labor market success. ...
PublisherElsevier BV * North-Holland
Publication in research information system
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- Kauppakorkeakoulu 
Related funder(s)Academy of Finland
Funding program(s)Strategic research programmes, AoF
Additional information about fundingThe Young Finns Study has been financially supported by the Academy of Finland: grants 286284 (for T.L.), 134309 (Eye), 126925, 121584, 124282, 129378 (Salve), 117787 (Gendi), and 41071 (Skidi); 293120 (Strategic Research Council funding for the project Work, Inequality and Public Policy); the Social Insurance Institution of Finland; Kuopio, Tampere and Turku University Hospital Medical Funds (for T.L. X51001); Juho Vainio Foundation; Paavo Nurmi Foundation; Finnish Foundation of Cardiovascular Research and Finnish Cultural Foundation; Tampere Tuberculosis Foundation and Emil Aaltonen Foundation. The Palkansaaja Foundation supported the use of linked data. Jutta Viinikainen and Jaakko Pehkonen acknowledge financial support from the Yrjö Jahnsson Foundation (grants 6664 and 6646). Mirka Hintsanen acknowledges financial support from the Academy of Finland (project 258578). We thank Leo-Pekka Lyytikäinen for help with the genetic data. The authors would like to thank two anonymous referees and Tomi Kyyrä for valuable comments and suggestions that have greatly improved the paper. ...
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