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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. 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.
  2. Meghir, Costas & Pistaferri, Luigi, 2002. "Income Variance Dynamics and Heterogeneity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3632, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. 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.
  4. 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).
  5. Michael Baker & Gary Solon, 1998. "Earnings Dynamics and Inequality among Canadian Men, 1976-1992: Evidence from Longitudinal Income Tax Records," Working Papers baker-98-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  6. 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.
  7. Bruce Chapman & Amy Y. C. Liu, 2013. "Repayment Burdens of Student Loans for Vietnamese Higher Education," Crawford School Research Papers 1306, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  8. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521522717 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. 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.
  10. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521818551 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Bruce Chapman & Kiatanantha Lounkaew, 2008. "Income Contingent Student Loans for Thailand : Alternatives Compared," EABER Working Papers 21950, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
  12. 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.
  13. 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.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. Fatih Guvenen, 2007. "An Empirical Investigation of Labor Income Processes," NBER Working Papers 13394, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Robert J. Gary-Bobo & Alain Trannoy, 2014. "Optimal Student Loans and Graduate Tax under Moral Hazard and Adverse Selection," Working Papers halshs-00993124, HAL.
  18. 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.
  19. 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.
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