At What Cost? State and National Estimates of Occupational Licensing
This study finds that roughly 19 percent of American workers now have a license to work, with individual state percentages ranging from about 14 to 27 percent. It also finds that licensing produces substantial economic returns for licensees in 36 states and nationally. For those 36 states and nationally, these returns imply large costs for consumers and the wider economy, in terms of losses in jobs, losses in output and misallocated resources. Annually, licensing may cost the national economy upwards of 1.8 million jobs, $6.2 billion in lost output and $183.9 billion in misallocated resources.