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Ethnicity and the Intergenerational Transmission of Welfare Dependency

  • George J. Borjas
  • Glenn T. Sueyoshi

There exist sizeable differences in the incidence and duration of welfare spells across ethnic groups, and these differences tend to persist across generations. Using the National Longitudinal Surveys of Youth, we find that children raised in welfare households are themselves more likely to become welfare recipients for longer durations. We also show that growing up in an ethnic environment characterized by welfare dependency has a significant effect on both the incidence and duration of welfare spells. About 80 percent of the difference in welfare participation rates between two ethnic groups in the parental generation is transmitted to the children.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w6175.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6175.

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Date of creation: Sep 1997
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Publication status: published as Borjas, George J. and Glenn T. Sueyoshi. “Ethnicity and the Intergenerational Transmission of Welfare Dependency.” Research in Labor Economics 16 (1997): 271-295.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6175
Note: LS CH
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  1. Richard B. Freeman, 1983. "Longitudinal Analyses of the Effects of Trade Unions," NBER Working Papers 1207, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Heckman, James J & Willis, Robert J, 1977. "A Beta-logistic Model for the Analysis of Sequential Labor Force Participation by Married Women," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 27-58, February.
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  7. George J. Borjas, 1991. "Ethnic Capital and Intergenerational Mobility," NBER Working Papers 3788, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. 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.
  9. Gottschalk, Peter, 1990. "AFDC Participation across Generations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 367-71, May.
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  13. Borjas, George J. & Sueyoshi, Glenn T., 1994. "A two-stage estimator for probit models with structural group effects," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1-2), pages 165-182.
  14. Robert J. Barro, 1989. "Economic Growth in a Cross Section of Countries," NBER Working Papers 3120, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  17. George J. Borjas & Stephen J. Trejo, 1991. "Immigrant participation in the welfare system," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 44(2), pages 195-211, January.
  18. Antel, John J, 1992. "The Intergenerational Transfer of Welfare Dependency: Some Statistical Evidence," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(3), pages 467-73, August.
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