Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Babur De Los Santos
In this paper, I attempt to ascertain the effect of labor earnings on commute time to work for individuals in South Carolina by using ACS 1-year Public Use Microdata Sample Estimates. First, I use standard linear regression models with controls to determine the direction and magnitude of the association between yearly labor earnings and commute time to work. I later use standard linear regression models with limited controls to determine how the association between yearly labor earnings and commute time changes before and during the events of the COVID-19 pandemic. There exists a positive relationship between yearly labor earnings and commute time in South Carolina. In particular, a $1000 increase in labor earnings per year is associated with, on average, an 11.75-minute increase in commute time to work per year, ceteris paribus. The relationship between yearly labor earnings and commute time becomes smaller but is still positive during COVID-19. In particular, individuals during COVID-19 experienced a decrease in commute time to work of 7.25 minutes per year per $1000 of yearly labor earnings, ceteris paribus. These results, although not causal, are consistent with economic arguments that working people require compensation from their jobs for the costs of commuting. The results affected by COVID-19 suggest that the compensating differential might become smaller as video conferencing becomes more widely accepted and, in essence, reduces average commute times.
Trela, Peter, "The Effect of Yearly Labor Earnings on Commute Time to Work in South Carolina" (2023). All Theses. 4008.