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How Much Does Absenteeism Cost?

Steven G. Allen
The Journal of Human Resources
Vol. 18, No. 3 (Summer, 1983), pp. 379-393
DOI: 10.2307/145207
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/145207
Page Count: 15
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Abstract

This paper presents evidence on the output loss resulting from absenteeism. Hedonic wage equations are estimated over two different data sets-the 1972-1973 Quality of Employment Survey and the pooled May 1973-1975 Current Population Survey-to calculate the cost in terms of reduced output and increased labor costs per payroll hour. Also, a manufacturing production function is estimated to directly compute the productivity loss. The results indicate that the effect of absenteeism on output is quite small: a 10 percentage point increase in the absence rate is associated with at most a 2.1 percent decrease in the wage.

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