Population Research and Policy Review

, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 267–278 | Cite as

Blue laws: Impact on regional retail activity

  • Douglas W. McNiel
  • Shirley S. Yu


Diametrically opposite conclusions about the impact of blue laws on regional retail activity can be found in both the popular press and the economics literature. Most of these conclusions are based either on anecdotal evidence or on data from particular types of retail stores in a very limited geographical area.

This study is based on a nation-wide analysis of the retail sector as a whole and ten subsectors in all regions of the U.S. with and without blue laws. The results suggest that Sunday closing laws do not affect the overall level of retail activity in a region in a significant manner. However, blue laws are shown to significantly affect the distribution of retail activity among certain subsectors of retail trade in a region.


Geographical Area Economic Policy Economic Literature Anecdotal Evidence Retail Store 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas W. McNiel
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shirley S. Yu
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Economics and FinanceMcNeese State UniversityLake CharlesUSA
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsDenison UniversityGranvilleUSA

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