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July 10, 2024

Has Income Growth between Generations of Americans Stalled?

A defining aspect of the American dream is that the economic well-being of each generation surpasses that of the previous one. However, commentators have questioned whether this holds true for the most recent generations. A 2022 Gallup poll found that only 42 percent of Americans expect today’s young people to have a better life than…

March 21, 2024

Sugary Beverage Consumption Among SNAP Recipients

The House Agriculture Committee recently failed to pass an appropriations bill that would have authorized a pilot program to test whether nutrition-based restrictions in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) could improve health outcomes for low-income households. This is just the latest rejection by Washington policymakers of proposals designed to improve nutritional outcomes for SNAP…

February 29, 2024

Addressing the False Claims from Industry Groups on Pilot Testing SNAP Restrictions

The House Agriculture Committee recently released an appropriations bill for fiscal year 2024 that sets aside $2 million to implement five pilot programs that would make certain unhealthy items ineligible for purchase with SNAP benefits. (For context, the $2 million represents roughly 0.000016% of the overall SNAP budget). The purpose of these pilot projects is…

February 7, 2024

Solving Benefit Cliffs in SNAP

At their best, safety net policies in the US reduce poverty by spurring upward mobility among the most disadvantaged. This requires identifying disadvantaged families and scaling benefits according to their need, all while trying to encourage employment and other mobility-inducing behaviors in the process. When safety net programs do not meet this charge, families can…

January 30, 2024

How Sensitive Are Single Mothers’ Work Decisions to a Change in Incentives? Correcting Misperceptions of the Evidence

Let’s start with a table. (With apologies to our mobile audience…) Evidence on Extensive Margin Employment Elasticities for Single Mothers   Reported Revised Consistent w/ 0.75? Notes Reviews or Based on Reviews Corinth et al. (2021, rev 2022) 0.75 —   p. 22; based on midpoint of McClelland and Mok (2012), p. 5 (below); unpublished…

October 5, 2023

Do 60 Percent Of American Workers Have Insecure Jobs?

American Compass has a new survey out in which it finds, among other results, that “only 40 percent of workers have secure jobs.” This is the latest attempt by the outfit to portray the American economy as in dire need of “rebuilding.” The report summarizing the findings is titled, “Labor Market Not Yet Working for…

January 3, 2023

Systemic Disadvantage

The term “systemic racism” freezes social, political, and policy conversation. As soon as the words are uttered, contending parties retreat to their respective corners to engage in a mutual misunderstanding guaranteed to produce anguish and anger on both sides. In a way, the resulting stasis serves the interests of both sides: Progressives are relieved of…