Raising alcohol prices. Would drinking by high school students be lower if alcohol prices were higher? Do peers cause cause others to drink more often or heavier?
Researchers asked these questions. They used data from nation-wide federal research.The researchers found that peers were significant in the choice to drink. But they had no real impact on the frequency of drinking. That included heavy episodic or so-called binge drinking.
So the price of alcohol had no real impact on the drinking of high school students.
- Peer drinking has a great effect on the decision of high school students to drink.
- Alcohol prices do not affect the quantity or frequency of drinking by high school students.
They concluded that “no significant impact on underage drinking will result from low-tax states’ increasing excise taxes on alcohol.” These findings are important for policies to reduce underage drinking.
Resources: Alcohol Prices
- Gruenewald, P., et al. Alcohol price, beverage quality, and the demand for alcohol. Alco Clin Exper Res.
- Lau, H. Cost of Alcohol as a Determinant of Alcohol Consumption. In: Gibbins, R., et al. (eds.) Res Adv Alco Drug Prob, Vol. 2. NY: Wiley. Pp. 211-245.
- Manning, W., The demand for alcohol. The differential response to price. J Hlth Econ, 14(2), 123-148.
- Nelson, J. Meta-analysis of alcohol price and income elasticities. Hlth Econ Rev, 3, 17.
- Ornstein, S., and Levy, D. Price and income elasticities of demand for alcoholic beverages. Rec Adv Alco, 1, 303-45.
- Ruhm, C., et al. What U.S. Data Should be Used to Measure the Price Elasticity of Demand for Alcohol? Paper #17578. Wash: NBER.
Ajilore O., et al. Alcohol consumption by youth. Peers, parents, or prices? Econ Hum Behav, 23, 76-83.