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Modeling Income Dynamics for Public Policy Design: An Application to Income Contingent Student Loans

  • Higgins, Tim

    ()

    (Australian National University)

  • Sinning, Mathias

    ()

    (Australian National University)

This paper studies the importance of dynamic earnings modeling for the design of income contingent student loans (ICLs). ICLs have been shown to be theoretically optimal in terms of efficiency in the presence of risk aversion, adverse selection and moral hazard, and have attractive equity properties. Recognition of their benefits has led to their adoption for tertiary education tuition fees in countries including Australia, New Zealand, and the UK. Since the design of ICLs relies on the prediction of the underlying costs, we explore the extent to which the complexity of earnings modeling affects the estimation of loan subsidies. The use of Australian data allows us to compare our simulated debt repayments to actual repayments under the Australian Higher Education Contribution Scheme (HECS). Our findings reveal that the complexity of earnings modeling has considerable implications for the calculation of loan subsidies.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7556.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Economics of Education Review, 2013, 37 (1), 273-285
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7556
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  1. Bruce Chapman & Kiatanantha Lounkaew, 2008. "Income Contingent Student Loans for Thailand : Alternatives Compared," EABER Working Papers 21950, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
  2. John M. Abowd & David Card, 1986. "On the Covariance Structure of Earnings and Hours Changes," NBER Working Papers 1832, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Lorenzo Cappellari, 2004. "The Dynamics and Inequality of Italian Men’s Earnings: Long-term Changes or Transitory Fluctuations?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  4. Dickens, Richard, 2000. "The Evolution of Individual Male Earnings in Great Britain: 1975-95," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(460), pages 27-49, January.
  5. Martin Browning & Mette Ejrn�s & Javier Alvarez, 2010. "Modelling Income Processes with Lots of Heterogeneity," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(4), pages 1353-1381.
  6. Robert J. Gary-Bobo & Alain Trannoy, 2014. "Optimal Student Loans and Graduate Tax under Moral Hazard and Adverse Selection," Working Papers halshs-00993124, HAL.
  7. Fatih Guvenen, 2007. "An empirical investigation of labor income processes," IFS Working Papers W07/13, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  8. Michael Baker & Gary Solon, 1999. "Earnings Dynamics and Inequality among Canadian Men, 1976-1992: Evidence from Longitudinal Income Tax Records," NBER Working Papers 7370, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Steven J. Haider, 2000. "Earnings Instability and Earnings Inequality of Males in the United States: 1967-1991," Working Papers 00-15, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  10. Chapman, Bruce & Liu, Amy Y.C., 2013. "Repayment burdens of student loans for Vietnamese higher education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 298-308.
  11. Meghir, Costas & Pistaferri, Luigi, 2002. "Income Variance Dynamics and Heterogeneity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3632, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. MaCurdy, Thomas E., 1982. "The use of time series processes to model the error structure of earnings in a longitudinal data analysis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 83-114, January.
  13. Migali, Giuseppe, 2012. "Funding higher education and wage uncertainty: Income contingent loan versus mortgage loan," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 871-889.
  14. Adriaan S. Kalwij & Rob Alessie, 2007. "Permanent and transitory wages of British men, 1975-2001: year, age and cohort effects," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(6), pages 1063-1093.
  15. Robert A. Moffitt & Peter Gottschalk, 2002. "Trends in the Transitory Variance of Earnings in the United States," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(478), pages C68-C73, March.
  16. Baker, Michael, 1997. "Growth-Rate Heterogeneity and the Covariance Structure of Life-Cycle Earnings," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 338-75, April.
  17. Darragh Flannery & Cathal O’Donoghue, 2011. "The Life-cycle Impact of Alternative Higher Education Finance Systems in Ireland," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 42(3), pages 237–270.
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