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The Impact of Remote Work on Local Employment, Business Relocation, and Local Home Costs

Michael Dalton, Matthew Dey, and Mark Loewenstein


We first impute teleworking take-up rates for the universe of business establishments in the U.S for the period immediately preceding the pandemic and for the summer of 2021.  Using establishment address and residence by occupation, we estimate the change in foot traffic inflow for every Census tract.  We document the consequent effects of changes in foot traffic on local employment by sector. The negative employment effect is especially strong for employment in accommodation and food services. Finally, we use the telework take-up rates and foot traffic measures to show the impacts on businesses downsizing, relocating, and local rent and home prices.