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Keywords:Intergenerational mobility 

Working Paper
Saving the American Dream? Education Policies in Spatial General Equilibrium

Children's education and economic opportunities differ substantially across US neighborhoods. This paper develops and estimates a spatial equilibrium model that links children's education outcomes to their childhood location. Two endogenous factors determine education choices in each location: local education quality and local labor market access. We estimate the model with US county-level data and study the effects of a school funding equalization on education outcomes and social mobility. The reform's direct effects improve education outcomes among children from low-skill families. However, ...
Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute Working Papers , Paper 47

Working Paper
Disparate Impacts of Job Loss by Parental Income and Implications for Intergenerational Mobility

Does job loss cause less economic damage if your parents are higher-income, and what are the implications for intergenerational mobility? In this paper we show that following a layoff, adult children born to parents in the bottom 20% of the income distribution have almost double the unemployment compared with those born to parents in the top 20%, with 118% higher present discounted value losses in earnings. Next, we show that these disparate impacts of job loss have important implications for inequality and intergenerational mobility. They increase the 80:20 income inequality ratio for those ...
Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute Working Papers , Paper 53

Working Paper
Un-Fortunate Sons: Effects of the Vietnam Draft Lottery on the Next Generation's Labor Market

Can shocks to one generation propagate to the next? To answer this question, we study how the Vietnam draft lottery affected the next generation's labor market. Using the universe of federal tax returns, we link fathers from draft cohorts to their sons' outcomes and find that sons of fathers randomly called by the draft 1) have lower earnings and labor force participation than their peers, and 2) are more likely to volunteer for military service. These findings highlight the strong role family plays in human capital development and occupational choice. More generally, our results provide ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2015-119

Journal Article
Black–White Differences in Intergenerational Economic Mobility in the U.S.

In recent decades, blacks have experienced substantially less upward mobility and substantially more downward mobility from one generation to the next than whites. These results are shown to be highly robust to a variety of measurement issues. The author examines rates of intergenerational mobility by race and asks whether such racial differences in the U.S. are likely to be eliminated and, if so, how long it might take.
Economic Perspectives , Issue Q I

Working Paper
Does Intergenerational Mobility Increase Corporate Profits?

We find that firms located in areas with higher intergenerational mobility are more profitable. Building off the work of Chetty and Hendren (2018a and 2018b)?who provide measures of intergenerational mobility for all commuting zones (essentially, metropolitan areas) within the U.S.?we are the first to show the positive association between intergenerational mobility and corporate profitability. Our regressions compare firms in the same industry at the same point in time and fully control for time-varying state-level shocks. As such, our findings cannot be explained by either differences in ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2019-081

Working Paper
The Decline in Intergenerational Mobility After 1980

We demonstrate that intergenerational mobility declined sharply for cohorts born between 1957 and 1964 compared to those born between 1942 and 1953. The former entered the labor market largely after the large rise in inequality that occurred around 1980 while the latter entered the labor market before this inflection point. We show that the rank-rank slope rose from 0.27 to 0.4 and the IGE rose from 0.35 to 0.51. The share of children whose income exceeds that of their parents fell by about 3 percentage points. These findings suggest that relative mobility fell by substantially more than ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2017-5

Working Paper
College Access and Attendance Patterns: A Long-Run View

We harmonize the results of 42 different data sets and studies dating back to the early 20th century to construct a time series of college attendance patterns for the United States. We find an important reversal around the time of World War II: before that time, family characteristics such as income were the better predictor of college attendance; afterwards, academic ability was the better predictor. We construct a model of college choice that can explain this reversal. The model's central mechanism is an exogenous rise in the demand for college that leads better colleges to become ...
Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute Working Papers , Paper 10

Working Paper
Explaining Intergenerational Mobility: The Role of Fertility and Family Transfers

Poor families have more children and transfer less resources to them. This suggests that family decisions about fertility and transfers dampen intergenerational mobility. To evaluate the quantitative importance of this mechanism, we extend the standard heterogeneous agent life cycle model with earnings risk and credit constraints to allow for endogenous fertility, family transfers, and education. The model, estimated to the US in the 2000s, implies that a counterfactual flat income-fertility profile would-through the equalization of initial conditions-increase intergenerational mobility by ...
Working Papers , Paper 2018-011


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