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The effects of welfare reform and related policies on single mothers' welfare use and employment

  • Adam Looney

This paper examines how changes in tax policy, welfare programs, public health insurance, and economic conditions during the 1990s affected welfare use and employment among single mothers. Drawing on panel data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation, I give new estimates of the effects of specific policy changes and use those estimates to explain changes in economic behavior. The results suggest that Welfare Reform policies, the EITC, and improved economic conditions, in that order, were the primary determinants of changes in welfare use and employment between 1993 and 1999.

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Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series Finance and Economics Discussion Series with number 2005-45.

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Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2005-45
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  1. Yelowitz, Aaron S, 1995. "The Medicaid Notch, Labor Supply, and Welfare Participation: Evidence from Eligibility Expansions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(4), pages 909-39, November.
  2. Hilary Williamson Hoynes, 2000. "Local Labor Markets And Welfare Spells: Do Demand Conditions Matter?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(3), pages 351-368, August.
  3. Jeffrey Grogger & Charles Michalopoulos, 2003. "Welfare Dynamics under Time Limits," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 530-554, June.
  4. John C. Ham & Lara D. Shore-Sheppard, 2005. "Did Expanding Medicaid Affect Welfare Participation?," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 58(3), pages 452-470, April.
  5. Robert F. Schoeni & Rebecca M. Blank, 2000. "What Has Welfare Reform Accomplished? Impacts on Welfare Participation, Employment, Income, Poverty, and Family Structure," Working Papers 00-02, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  6. repec:oup:qjecon:v:111:y:1996:i:2:p:391-430 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Nada Eissa & Hilary Williamson Hoynes, 1998. "The Earned Income Tax Credit and the Labor Supply of Married Couples," NBER Working Papers 6856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Robert Moffitt, 2002. "The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program," NBER Working Papers 8749, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Hilary Hoynes, 1993. "Welfare Transfers in Two-Parent Families: Labor Supply and Welfare Participation Under AFDC-UP," NBER Working Papers 4407, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Rebecca M. Blank, 1999. "What Goes Up Must Come Down? Explaining Recent Changes in Public Assistance Caseloads," JCPR Working Papers 78, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  11. repec:oup:qjecon:v:111:y:1996:i:2:p:431-66 is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Jacob A. Klerman & Steven J. Haider, 2001. "A Stock-Flow Analysis of the Welfare Caseload: Insights from California Economic Conditions," Working Papers 01-02, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  13. Rebecca M. Blank, 2002. "Evaluating Welfare Reform in the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1105-1166, December.
  14. Ellwood, David T., 2000. "The Impact of the Earned Income Tax Credit and Social Policy Reforms on Work, Marriage, and Living Arrangements," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 53(n. 4), pages 1063-1106, December.
  15. Jeffrey Grogger, 2004. "Time Limits and Welfare Use," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  16. V. Joseph Hotz, 2003. "The Earned Income Tax Credit," NBER Chapters, in: Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, pages 141-198 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. repec:oup:qjecon:v:110:y:1995:i:4:p:909-39 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. 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.
  19. repec:oup:qjecon:v:111:y:1996:i:2:p:605-37 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Rebecca M. Blank, 1997. "What Causes Public Assistance Caseloads to Grow?," NBER Working Papers 6343, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Jacob Alex Klerman & Caroline Danielson, 2004. "Why Did the Welfare Caseload Decline?," Working Papers 167, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  22. Jeffrey Grogger, 2001. "The Effects of Time Limits and Other Policy Changes on Welfare Use, Work, and Income Among Female-Headed Families," NBER Working Papers 8153, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. J. P. Ziliak & D. N. Figlio & E. E. Davis & L. S. Connolly, . "Accounting for the Decline in AFDC Caseloads: Welfare Reform or Economic Growth?," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1151-97, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  24. Gottschalk, Peter & Moffitt, Robert A, 1994. "Welfare Dependence: Concepts, Measures, and Trends," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 38-42, May.
  25. repec:oup:qjecon:v:116:y:2001:i:3:p:1063-1114 is not listed on IDEAS
  26. Daniel Feenberg & Elisabeth Coutts, 1993. "An introduction to the TAXSIM model," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(1), pages 189-194.
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