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A Longitudinal Analysis of Entries and Exits of the Low-Income Elderly to and from the Supplemental Security Income Program

Author

Listed:
  • Todd Elder

    (Michigan State University)

  • Elizabeth Powers

    (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Abstract

This paper is the first to analyze eligibility and participation spells and estimate dynamic models of SSI participation by the aged. We first describe eligibility and participation spells and estimate competing-risk models of the determinants of transitions. Next, we present evidence of extensive measurement error in the expected SSI benefit and the associated imputed eligibility status of sample members. We compare and contrast two approaches to ameliorating this error. A cross-section approach exploits self-reports of participants’ benefits, and a longitudinal approach makes inferences from time variation in the computed benefit. We find that the hazard model estimates vary little with regard to whether or which particular measurement error correction is employed. Finally, the longitudinal patterns of eligibility and participation suggest that take-up rates among the persistently eligible are nearly 80 percent.

Suggested Citation

  • Todd Elder & Elizabeth Powers, 2007. "A Longitudinal Analysis of Entries and Exits of the Low-Income Elderly to and from the Supplemental Security Income Program," Working Papers wp156, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  • Handle: RePEc:mrr:papers:wp156
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    File URL: http://www.mrrc.isr.umich.edu/publications/Papers/pdf/wp156.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Hernandez, Monica & Pudney, Stephen, 2007. "Measurement error in models of welfare participation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 327-341, February.
    2. Todd E. Elder & Elizabeth T. Powers, 2004. "SSI for the Aged and the Problem of 'Take-Up'," Working Papers wp076, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
    3. Powers, Elizabeth T. & Neumark, David, 2005. "The Supplemental Security Income Program and Incentives to Claim Social Security Retirement Early," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 58(1), pages 5-26, March.
    4. Rebecca M. Blank & Patricia Ruggles, 1996. "When Do Women Use Aid to Families with Dependent Children and Food Stamps? The Dynamics of Eligibility Versus Participation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 31(1), pages 57-89.
    5. Haider, Steven J. & Klerman, Jacob Alex, 2005. "Dynamic properties of the welfare caseload," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(5), pages 629-648, October.
    6. Jennifer L. Warlick, 1982. "Participation of the Aged in SSI," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 17(2), pages 236-260.
    7. Jacob Alex Klerman & Steven J. Haider, 2004. "A Stock-Flow Analysis of the Welfare Caseload," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(4).
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