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Labor Supply Estimates For Public Policy Evaluation

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  • George J. Borjas
  • James J. Heckman

Abstract

In recent years, the study of labor supply has occupied the attention of a large number of economists. With the growth in interest in the topic and with the inevitable diversity of economic models and statistical methods proposed by new entrants in the field, the literature has developed its own folklore. The principal legend is that the empirical estimates of the same parameters obtained from the set of available studies display such diversity that they are of little use to policymakers. This paper disputes the folklore. We claim that there is more agreement than disagreement once a few reasonable criteria based on recent theoretical work are used to eliminate certain studies from consideration, and once we are careful about posing the question we seek the estimates to address.

Suggested Citation

  • George J. Borjas & James J. Heckman, 1978. "Labor Supply Estimates For Public Policy Evaluation," NBER Working Papers 0299, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0299 Note: LS
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James H. Scott Jr., 1976. "A Theory of Optimal Capital Structure," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 7(1), pages 33-54, Spring.
    2. Arnold C. Harberger, 1962. "The Incidence of the Corporation Income Tax," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 215-215.
    3. Shoven, John B, 1976. "The Incidence and Efficiency Effects of Taxes on Income from Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1261-1283, December.
    4. Boskin, Michael J, 1978. "Taxation, Saving, and the Rate of Interest," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(2), pages 3-27, April.
    5. Michael J. Boskin, 1978. "Taxation, Saving, and the Rate of Interest," NBER Chapters,in: Research in Taxation, pages 3-27 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hsing, Yu, 1996. "Estimating the laffer curve and policy implications," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 395-401.
    2. Grant, James H & Hamermesh, Daniel S, 1981. "Labor Market Competition among Youths, White Women and Others," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(3), pages 354-360, August.
    3. Fullerton, Don, 1982. "On the possibility of an inverse relationship between tax rates and government revenues," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, pages 3-22.
    4. James J. Heckman & Thomas E. MaCurdy, 1982. "New Methods for Estimating Labor Supply Functions: A Survey," NBER Working Papers 0858, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Daniel S. Hamermesh, 1980. "Transfers, Taxes, and the NAIRU," NBER Working Papers 0548, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Charles L. Ballard & John B. Shoven & John Whalley, 1982. "The Welfare Cost of Distortions in the United States Tax System: A General Equilibrium Approach," NBER Working Papers 1043, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Joel Slemrod & Shlomo Yitzhaki, 1982. "On Choosing a Flat-Rate Income Tax Schedule," NBER Working Papers 1028, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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