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Migration amoung low-income households: Helping the witch doctors reach consensus

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  • J. R. Walker

Abstract

Do states with high welfare benefits attract low-income people from other states? Using data from the County to County Migration Flow Files from the 1980 census, I investigate this question by reintroducing migration rates into the definition of welfare migrants and examining situations in which a person moves from one state to a neighboring state whose welfare benefits are appreciably higher. I find no compelling evidence in support of the welfare magnet theory; my results are as likely to validate as they are to refute the hypothesis.

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File URL: http://www.irp.wisc.edu/publications/dps/pdfs/dp103194.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty in its series Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers with number 1031-94.

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Handle: RePEc:wop:wispod:1031-94

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  1. Moffitt, Robert, 1992. "Incentive Effects of the U.S. Welfare System: A Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(1), pages 1-61, March.
  2. Cameron, A. Colin & Trivedi, Pravin K., 1990. "Regression-based tests for overdispersion in the Poisson model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 347-364, December.
  3. Gourieroux, Christian & Monfort, Alain & Trognon, Alain, 1984. "Pseudo Maximum Likelihood Methods: Applications to Poisson Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 701-20, May.
  4. Blank, Rebecca M., 1988. "The effect of welfare and wage levels on the location decisions of female-headed households," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 186-211, September.
  5. David T. Ellwood & Lawrence H. Summers, 1985. "Poverty in America: Is Welfare the Answer or the Problem?," NBER Working Papers 1711, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Edward M. Gramlich & Deborah S. Laren, 1984. "Migration and Income Redistribution Responsibilities," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 19(4), pages 489-511.
  7. Rebecca M. Blank & Patricia Ruggles, 1993. "When Do Women Use AFDC & Food Stamps? The Dynamics of Eligibility vs. Participation," NBER Working Papers 4429, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Orr, Larry L, 1976. "Income Transfers as a Public Good: An Application to AFDC," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 66(3), pages 359-71, June.
  9. Gottschalk, Peter & Moffitt, Robert A, 1994. "Welfare Dependence: Concepts, Measures, and Trends," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 38-42, May.
  10. Gourieroux, Christian & Monfort, Alain & Trognon, Alain, 1984. "Pseudo Maximum Likelihood Methods: Theory," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 681-700, May.
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