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Does State Fiscal Relief during Recessions Increase Employment? Evidence from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Author

Listed:
  • Gabriel Chodorow-Reich
  • Laura Feiveson
  • Zachary Liscow
  • William Gui Woolston

Abstract

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 included $88 billion of aid to state governments administered through the Medicaid reimbursement process. We examine the effect of these transfers on states' employment. Because state fiscal relief outlays are endogenous to a state's economic environment, OLS results are biased downward. We address this problem by using a state's prerecession Medicaid spending level to instrument for ARRA state fiscal relief. In our preferred specification, a state's receipt of a marginal $100,000 in Medicaid outlays results in an additional 3.8 job-years, 3.2 of which are outside the government, health, and education sectors. (JEL H75, I18, I38, R23)

Suggested Citation

  • Gabriel Chodorow-Reich & Laura Feiveson & Zachary Liscow & William Gui Woolston, 2012. "Does State Fiscal Relief during Recessions Increase Employment? Evidence from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 118-145, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejpol:v:4:y:2012:i:3:p:118-45 Note: DOI: 10.1257/pol.4.3.118
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:nbr:nberch:13342 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Timothy J. Bartik, 1991. "Who Benefits from State and Local Economic Development Policies?," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number wbsle.
    3. Nicholas S. Souleles & Jonathan A. Parker & David S. Johnson, 2006. "Household Expenditure and the Income Tax Rebates of 2001," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 1589-1610.
    4. repec:nbr:nberch:13344 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Juan Serrato & Philippe Wingender, 2016. "Estimating Local Fiscal Multipliers," Working Papers id:11109, eSocialSciences.
    6. Claudia R. Sahm & Matthew D. Shapiro & Joel Slemrod, 2010. "Household Response to the 2008 Tax Rebate: Survey Evidence and Aggregate Implications," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 24, pages 69-110 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Jeffrey Clemens & Stephen Miran, 2012. "Fiscal Policy Multipliers on Subnational Government Spending," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, pages 46-68.
    8. Diego Comin & Bart Hobijn, 2011. "Technology Diffusion and Postwar Growth," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2010, Volume 25, pages 209-246 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Neumann, Todd C. & Fishback, Price V. & Kantor, Shawn, 2010. "The Dynamics of Relief Spending and the Private Urban Labor Market During the New Deal," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 70(01), pages 195-220, March.
    10. Valerie A. Ramey, 2011. "Can Government Purchases Stimulate the Economy?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 673-685.
    11. Alan J. Auerbach & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2012. "Measuring the Output Responses to Fiscal Policy," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 1-27, May.
    12. Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 1990. "A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 57(3), pages 403-414.
    13. Poterba, James M, 1994. "State Responses to Fiscal Crises: The Effects of Budgetary Institutions and Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 799-821, August.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H75 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Government: Health, Education, and Welfare
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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