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Financial Consequences of Health Insurance: Evidence from the ACA’s Dependent Coverage Mandate
We study the ﬁnancial eﬀects of health insurance for young adults using the Aﬀordable Care Act’s dependent coverage mandate as a source of exogenous variation. Using nationally repre-sentative, anonymized credit report and publicly available survey data on medical expenditures, we exploit the mandate’s implementation in 2010 and its automatic disenrollment mechanism at age 26. Our estimates show that increasing access to health insurance lowered young adults’ out-of-pocket medical expenditures, debt in third-party collections, and the probability of per-sonal bankruptcy. However, most improvements in ﬁnancial outcomes are transitory, as they diminish after an individual ages out of the mandate at age 26.
AUTHORS: Mikhed, Vyacheslav; Blascak, Nathan
Health Insurance as an Income Stabilizer
We evaluate the effect of health insurance on the incidence of negative income shocks using the tax data and survey responses of nearly 14,000 low income households. Us-ing a regression discontinuity (RD) design and variation in the cost of nongroup pri-vate health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, we find that eligibility for sub-sidized Marketplace insurance is associated with a 16% and 9% decline in the rates of unexpected job loss and income loss, respectively. Effects are concentrated among households with past health costs and exist only for “unexpected” forms of earnings variation, suggesting a health-productivity link. Calculations based on our fuzzy RD estimate imply a $256 to $476 per year welfare benefit of health insurance in terms of reduced exposure to job loss.
AUTHORS: Grinstein-Weiss, Michal; Gallagher, Emily; Blascak, Nathan; Roll, Stephen
Financial Consequences of Identity Theft: Evidence from Consumer Credit Bureau Records
This paper examines how a negative shock to the security of personal finances due to severe identity theft changes consumer credit behavior. Using a unique data set of consumer credit records and alerts indicating identity theft and the exogenous timing of victimization, we show that the immediate effects of fraud on credit files are typically negative, small, and transitory. After those immediate effects fade, identity theft victims experience persistent, positive changes in credit characteristics, including improved Risk Scores. Consumers also exhibit caution with credit by having fewer open revolving accounts while maintaining total balances and credit limits. Our results are consistent with consumer inattention to credit
AUTHORS: Blascak, Nathan; Cheney, Julia S.; Ritter, Dubravka; Hunt, Robert M.; Vogan, Michael; Mikhed, Vyacheslav
IDENTITY THEFT AS A TEACHABLE MOMENT
SUPERCEDES 14-28. This paper examines how a negative shock to the security of personal finances due to severe identity theft changes consumer credit behavior. Using a unique data set of linked consumer credit data and alerts indicating identity theft, we show that the immediate effects of fraud on consumers are typically negative, small, and transitory. After those immediate effects fade, identity theft victims experience persistent, positive changes in credit characteristics, including improved risk scores (indicating lower default risk). We argue that these changes are consistent with increased salience of credit file information to the consumer at the time of severe identity theft.
AUTHORS: Ritter, Dubravka; Cheney, Julia S.; Hunt, Robert M.; Vogan, Michael; Blascak, Nathan; Mikhed, Vyacheslav
Did the ACA's Dependent Coverage Mandate Reduce Financial Distress for Young Adults?
We analyze whether the passage of the Affordable Care Act's dependent coverage mandate in 2010 reduced financial distress for young adults. U sing nationally representative, anonymized consumer credit report information, we find that young adults covered by the mandate lowered their past due debt, had fewer delinquencies, and had a reduced probability of filing for bankruptcy. These effects are stronger in geographic areas that experienced higher uninsured rates for young adults prior to the mandate's implementation. Our estimates also show that some improvements are transitory because they diminish after an individual ages out of the mandate at age 26.
AUTHORS: Blascak, Nathan; Mikhed, Vyacheslav