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Series:Current Policy Perspectives 

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Relative pay, productivity, and labor supply

Relative pay ? earnings compared with the earnings of others doing a similar job, or compared with one?s earnings in the past ? affects how much individuals would like to work (labor supply) and their effort on the job; it therefore has implications for both employers and policy makers. A collection of recent studies shows that relative pay information, even when it is irrelevant, significantly affects labor supply and effort. This effect stems mainly from those who compare unfavorably, as essentially all studies find that awareness of earning less than others or less than in the past ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 17-2

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The Rhode Island labor market in recovery: where is the skills gap?

There has been much anecdotal evidence claiming that Rhode Island's labor force is unable to supply the skills that the state's employers seek. The anecdotal evidence has given rise to the concern that labor market mismatch is holding back the state's economic recovery. Such a concern comes with particularly high stakes in the case of Rhode Island, which suffered the most severe drop in employment in New England during the Great Recession and has endured the region's highest unemployment rate during the recovery. This paper conducts a data-driven analysis of several indicators of potential ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 15-7

Report
Why has the cyclicality of productivity changed?: what does it mean?

Historically, U.S. labor productivity (output per hour) and total factor productivity (TFP) rose in booms and fell in recessions. Different models of business cycles explain this procyclicality differently. Traditional Keynesian models relied on "factor hoarding," that is, variations in how intensively labor and capital were utilized over the business cycle. Real business cycle (RBC) models instead posit that procyclical technology shocks drive the business cycle. Since the mid-1980s, however, the procyclicality of productivity has waned. TFP has been roughly acyclical with respect to ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 15-6

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The Great Recession, entrepreneurship, and productivity performance

In recent years, it is argued, the level of entrepreneurial activity in the United States has declined, causing concern because of its potential macroeconomic implications. In particular, it is feared that a lower rate of firm creation may be associated with lower productivity growth and, hence, lower economic growth in the coming years. This paper studies the issue, focusing on the dynamics of entrepreneurship and productivity around the time of the Great Recession. The author looks first at the recent evolution of alternative measures of entrepreneurship and of productivity, and then ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 14-8

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The Medicaid Expansion and the Uptake of Medication-assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder: Evidence from the Rhode Island All-payer Claims Database, 2012–2018

This article uses the all-payer claims database for the state of Rhode Island to assess recent progress in the state toward the goal of expanding access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder (OUD). The analysis highlights the role played by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the associated Medicaid expansion in furthering that goal. Using measures that account for changes in health insurance enrollment, we find that the MAT rate per 100,000 enrollees in Rhode Island effectively doubled between 2012 and 2018, while the prevalence of OUD in the sample also doubled over ...
Current Policy Perspectives

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Why have revenue-strapped New England school districts been slow to turn to alternative funding sources?

During and even after the Great Recession, numerous popular press stories commented on the apparent growth of non-tax revenues in the face of school district budget deficits. But Downes and Killeen (2014) show that nationally the growth of non-traditional revenues has been far less than these articles may lead the reader to believe. This paper uses data from the New England states to assess the empirical content of some of the possible explanations of this slow growth. In New England, as in the rest of the nation, non-tax revenues per pupil have grown in real terms but have not become a more ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 16-1

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Global standards for liquidity regulation

Liquidity risk has received increased attention recently, especially in light of the 2007 - 2009 financial crisis, when banks' extensive reliance on short-term funding, maturity mismatches between assets and liabilities, and insufficient liquidity buffers made them quite susceptible to liquidity risk. To mitigate such risk, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) introduced an improved global capital framework and new global liquidity standards for banks in December 2010 in the form of the new Basel Accord (Basel III). This brief offers insights from the crisis experience, ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 15-3

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Corporate Debt Maturity and Monetary Policy

Do firms lengthen the maturity of their borrowing following a flattening of the Treasury yield curve that results from monetary policy operations? We explore this question separately for the years before and during the zero lower bound (ZLB) period, recognizing that the same change in the yield curve slope signifies different states of the economy and monetary policy over the two regimes. We find that the answer is robustly yes for the pre-ZLB period: Firms extended the maturity of their bond issuance by nearly three years in response to a policy-induced reduction of 1 percentage point in the ...
Current Policy Perspectives

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COVID-19 and the Labor Market Outcomes for Prime-Aged Women

This paper documents labor market outcomes for prime-aged women relative to those for prime-aged men since the COVID-19 pandemic officially started. The pandemic-induced recession has played out very differently compared with previous recessions, with women initially losing jobs at higher rates than men. While the pandemic has been hard for everybody, it has resulted in a widening of the gender gaps in employment and labor force participation of roughly 2 percentage points. The gaps grew initially due to occupation distribution differences across genders as well as school closings. Women ...
Current Policy Perspectives

Report
Access to medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder: is Rhode Island different, and why?

This paper assesses the prevalence of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) among treatment episodes for opioid use disorder (OUD) in Rhode Island, as compared with the remaining New England states and the United States as a whole. Based on the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS-A), a national census of admissions into publicly funded treatment facilities for substance use disorders, we find that during the period beginning in 2000 through 2017, Rhode Island exhibited a greater tendency to use MAT as part of OUD treatment compared with the average state in the United States and compared with the ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 19-2

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