13 June 2019

Local Aggregate Effects of Minimum Wage Increases

Following minimum wage increases, both prices and nominal spending rise modestly, Daniel Cooper, María José Luengo-Prado, and Jonathan A. Parker find. Total debt among households with low credit scores declines, auto debt rises, and access to credit increases.

12 June 2019

What Happened to U.S. Business Dynamism?

A study by Ufuk Akcigit and Sina T. Ates suggests that a decline in the intensity of knowledge diffusion from frontier firms to laggard firms is a dominant factor in market concentration and the slowdown in business dynamism in the United States.

11 June 2019

Cognitive Ability, Financial Literacy, and Advice

Cognitive ability and financial literacy strongly improve the quality, but not the quantity, of financial advice sought by older Americans, who tend to seek financial help from professionals rather than family, Hugh Hoikwang Kim, Raimond Maurer, and Olivia S. Mitchell find.

10 June 2019

The Wage Effects of Longer Hours

While average hourly wages tend to be higher in occupations with longer average work weeks, within an occupation, those who tend to work longer hours earn a relatively small wage premium, according to Jeffrey T. Denning, Brian Jacob, Lars Lefgren, and Christian vom Lehn.

7 June 2019

Non-Proportional Thinking in Financial Markets

Kelly Shue and Richard R. Townsend argue that a number of asset pricing puzzles, such as the negative relation between past returns and volatility, can be explained by a tendency of investors to think about the impact of news on stock prices in dollar terms rather than in terms of percentage effect on prices.

6 June 2019

Early Interventions for Very Low Birth Weight Children

Early interventions for low birth weight newborns causes a 0.34 standard deviation increase in test scores in elementary and middle school, a 17.1 percentage point increase in probability of college enrollment, and a decrease of almost $70,000 in social program expenditures by age 14, according to a study by Eric Chyn, Samantha Gold, and Justine S. Hastings.

5 June 2019

Schools, Neighborhoods, and Crime-Prone Peers

Stephen B. Billings and Mark Hoekstra estimate that a five percentage point increase in elementary school students’ exposure to crime-prone peers in school increases those students’ arrest rates at age 19-21 by 6.5 percent.

4 June 2019

Consequences of Arsenic Mitigation Effort in Bangladesh

Discovery of arsenic in groundwater in Bangladesh prompted a campaign that led 20 percent of the population to switch from backyard wells to drinking water sources at greater risk of fecal contamination. Nina Buchmann, Erica M. Field, Rachel Glennerster, and Reshmaan N. Hussam find child mortality 46 percent higher in households that switched.

3 June 2019

Lasting Impacts of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake

Western cities most impacted by the disruption of commerce and other effects of the devastating San Franciso earthquake of 1906 experienced lower population increases relative to less-affected cities until the late 20th century, Philipp Ager, Katherine Eriksson, Casper Worm Hansen, and Lars Lønstrup find. The quake permanently changed the spatial distribution of economic activity in the West.

31 May 2019

Patent Trolls: Benign Middlemen or Stick-Up Artists?

Downstream innovation drops in fields where patents have been acquired by non-participating entities (NPEs), or patent trolls, while upstream innovation is encouraged, David S. Abrams, Ufuk Akcigit, Gokhan Oz, and Jeremy G. Pearce find.
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