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Games the States Don't Play: Welfare Benefits and the Theory of Fiscal Federalism

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  • Shroder, Mark

Abstract

Fiscal federalism theory predicts that states will behave strategically in welfare programs because voter demand for welfare is sensitive to tax price, while the tax price itself changes because of welfare-induced migration. This paper tests these propositions on AFDC in the United States for a panel from 1982-88 using new models for the determination of the recipiency ratio (the tax price) and composite neighbors. The data do not support any substantial tax price elasticity of demand for welfare. Estimates of migration effects on tax price are found to be sensitive to specification. Copyright 1995 by MIT Press.

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  • Shroder, Mark, 1995. "Games the States Don't Play: Welfare Benefits and the Theory of Fiscal Federalism," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(1), pages 183-191, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:77:y:1995:i:1:p:183-91
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