Cannabis detractors often argue that increased marijuana use diminishes motivation, impedes cognitive function, harms health and negatively impacts economic well-being among adults.

In order to challenge these unproven hypotheses, researchers at San Diego State University and Bentley University explored the impacts of recreational marijuana laws on employment and wages. The researchers' study, “The Effects Of Recreational Marijuana Legalization On Employment And Earnings,” is the first to explore the impacts of legalization on wages and labor market outcomes.

Does Recreational Cannabis Affect Employment And Earnings?

The study, published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, found little evidence to support the notion that recreational cannabis adversely affects labor market outcomes. At the same time, the study found that cannabis legalization was not associated with an important change in the wage rate paid to workers or the rates of employment.

However, the study provided evidence that recreational cannabis adoption is associated with an increase in agriculture employment among working-age individuals.

“The magnitudes of these employment effects …

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