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Jel Classification:I18 

Working Paper
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 ...
Working Papers , Paper 18-3

Report
A Parsimonious Behavioral SEIR Model of the 2020 COVID Epidemic in the United States and the United Kingdom

I present a behavioral epidemiological model of the evolution of the COVID epidemic in the United States and the United Kingdom over the past 12 months. The model includes the introduction of a new, more contagious variant in the UK in early fall and the US in mid December. The model is behavioral in that activity, and thus transmission, responds endogenously to the daily death rate. I show that with only seasonal variation in the transmission rate and pandemic fatigue modeled as a one-time reduction in the semi-elasticity of the transmission rate to the daily death rate late in the year, the ...
Staff Report , Paper 619

Discussion Paper
Investigating the Effect of Health Insurance in the COVID-19 Pandemic

Does health insurance improve health? This question, while apparently a tautology, has been the subject of considerable economic debate. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has acquired a greater urgency as the lack of universal health insurance has been cited as a cause of the profound racial gap in coronavirus cases, and as a cause of U.S. difficulties in managing the pandemic more generally. However, estimating the effect of health insurance is difficult because it is (generally) not assigned at random. In this post, we approach this question in a novel way by exploiting a natural ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20200925

Newsletter
Measuring the relationship between business reopenings, Covid-19, and consumer behavior

On March 17, 2020, seven counties in the San Francisco Bay Area put into place the first stay-at-home orders in the United States. In the following weeks, counties and states implemented a cascading sequence of stay-at-home orders, bans on public gatherings, shutdowns of nonessential businesses, and face mask mandates. But as small businesses began to face financial insolvency, states and counties began easing these restrictions. To evaluate the effectiveness of policies restricting mobility and business activity, it is important to document the effects of reopening businesses on public ...
Chicago Fed Letter , Issue 445 , Pages 6

Working Paper
How do Doctors Respond to Incentives? Unintended Consequences of Paying Doctors to Reduce Costs

Billions of dollars have been spent on pilot programs searching for ways to reduce healthcare costs. I study one such program, where hospitals pay doctors bonuses for reducing the total hospital costs of admitted Medicare patients (a ?bundled payment?). Doctors respond to the bonuses by becoming more likely to admit patients whose treatment can generate high bonuses, and sorting healthier patients into participating hospitals. Conditional on patient health, however, doctors do not reduce costs or change procedure use. These results highlight the ability of doctors to game incentive schemes, ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2017-9

Working Paper
What Happened to the US Economy During the 1918 Influenza Pandemic? A View Through High-Frequency Data

Burns and Mitchell (1946, 109) found a recession of “exceptional brevity and moderate amplitude.” I confirm their judgment by examining a variety of high-frequency data. Industrial output fell sharply but rebounded within months. Retail seemed little affected and there is no evidence of increased business failures or stressed financial system. Cross-sectional data from the coal industry documents the short-lived impact of the epidemic on labor supply. The Armistice possibly prolonged the 1918 recession, short as it was, by injecting momentary uncertainty. Interventions to hinder the ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP 2020-11

Journal Article
Lockdown Responses to COVID-19

This article describes the relationship between countries' lockdown responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and those countries' political rights and civil liberties, macroeconomic variables, and vulnerability to the virus. Political rights and civil liberties cannot explain the differences in lockdown timing across countries. Countries with high contagion exposure due to weak water sanitation and weak health systems locked down their economies as fast as possible to reduce contagion. However, countries more vulnerable to COVID-19 due to large fractions of elderly and smokers in the population did ...
Review , Volume 103 , Issue 2 , Pages 127-151

Discussion Paper
Preemptive Runs and the Offshore U.S. Dollar Money Market Funds Industry

In March 2020, U.S. dollar-denominated prime money market funds (MMFs) suffered heavy outflows as concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic increased in the United States and Europe. Investors redeemed their shares en masse not only from funds domiciled in the United States (“domestic”) but also from offshore funds. In this post, we use differences in the regulatory regimes of domestic and offshore funds to identify the impact of the redemption gates and liquidity fees recently introduced as part of MMF industry reforms in both the United States and Europe.
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20211122

Working Paper
How Important Is Health Inequality for Lifetime Earnings Inequality?

Using a dynamic panel approach, we provide empirical evidence that negative health shocks reduce earnings. The effect is primarily driven by the participation margin and is concentrated in less educated individuals and those with poor health. We build a dynamic, general equilibrium, life cycle model that is consistent with these findings. In the model, individuals whose health is risky and heterogeneous choose to either work, or not work and apply for social security disability insurance (SSDI). Health affects individuals’ productivity, SSDI access, disutility from work, mortality, and ...
FRB Atlanta Working Paper , Paper 2021-1

Working Paper
Checking the Path Towards Recovery from the COVID-19 Isolation Response

This paper examines the impact of the behavioral changes and governments' responses to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic using a unique dataset of daily private forecasters' expectations on a sample of 32 emerging and advanced economies from January 1 till April 13, 2020. We document three important lessons from the data: First, there is evidence of a relation between the stringency of the policy interventions and the health outcomes consistent with slowing down the spread of the pandemic. Second, we find robust evidence that private forecasters have come to anticipate a sizeable ...
Globalization Institute Working Papers , Paper 384

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