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THE IMPACT OF LOCAL LABOR MARKET CONDITIONS ON THE OFF-FARM EARNINGS OF FARM OPERATORS

By Lewell F. Gunter and Kevin T. McNamara

Abstract

Local labor market characteristics are theoretically relevant to the determination of off-farm earnings of farm operators, but the empirical analysis of these effects has been hindered by a lack of appropriate data. This study employs the new census public use micro-data sample, PUMS-D, to investigate the effect of local labor market characteristics on off-farm earnings of farm operators. The PUMS-D data allow local characteristics to be defined on a labor market area basis, rather than on a political boundary basis. For a sample of Georgia farm operators, local labor market size, unemployment rates, and industrial structure were found to have significant impacts on off-farm employment and earnings.Labor and Human Capital,

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