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The Effects of Housing Assistance on Labor Supply: Evidence from a Voucher Lottery

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  • Brian A. Jacob
  • Jens Ludwig
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    Abstract

    This study estimates the effects of means-tested housing programs on labor supply using data from a randomized housing voucher wait-list lottery in Chicago. Economic theory is ambiguous about the expected sign of any labor supply response. We find that among working-age, able-bodied adults, housing voucher use reduces labor force participation by around 4 percentage points (6 percent) and quarterly earnings by $329 (10 percent), and increases Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program participation by around 2 percentage points (15 percent). We find no evidence that the housing-specific mechanisms hypothesized to promote work, such as neighborhood quality or residential stability, are important empirically. (JEL I38, J22, R23, R38)

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

    Volume (Year): 102 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 1 (February)
    Pages: 272-304

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    Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:102:y:2012:i:1:p:272-304

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    Cited by:
    1. Fredrik Andersson & John C. Haltiwanger & Mark J. Kutzbach & Giordano Palloni & Henry O. Pollakowski & Daniel H. Weinberg, 2013. "Childhood Housing And Adult Earnings: A Between-Siblings Analysis Of Housing Vouchers And Public Housing," Working Papers 13-48, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    2. Brian A. Jacob & Jens Ludwig & Douglas L. Miller, 2011. "The Effects of Housing and Neighborhood Conditions on Child Mortality," NBER Working Papers 17369, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Hamza Polattimur, 2013. "Housing, Collateral Constraints, and Fiscal Policy," Ekonomi-tek - International Economics Journal, Turkish Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 53-82, May.
    4. Brian Jacob & Max Kapustin & Jens Ludwig, 2014. "Human Capital Effects of Anti-Poverty Programs: Evidence from a Randomized Housing Voucher Lottery," NBER Working Papers 20164, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Robert A. Moffitt, 2012. "The Reveral of the Employment-Population Ratio in the 2000s: Facts and Explanations," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 45(2 (Fall)), pages 201-264.
    6. Robert McClelland & Shannon Mok, 2012. "A Review of Recent Research on Labor Supply Elasticities: Working Paper 2012-12," Working Papers 43675, Congressional Budget Office.
    7. Robert A. Moffitt, 2012. "The U.S. Employment-Population Reversal in the 2000s: Facts and Explanations," NBER Working Papers 18520, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Carlson, Deven & Haveman, Robert & Kaplan, Thomas & Wolfe, Barbara, 2012. "Long-term effects of public low-income housing vouchers on neighborhood quality and household composition," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 101-120.

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