American Economic Review article “The Long-Run Impact of Cash Transfers to Poor Families”
An article on the impact of cash transfers on longevity was published in the April 2016 volume of the American Economic Review, a highly distinguished peer-reviewed journal published by the American Economic Association.
We estimate the long-run impact of cash transfers to poor families on children’s longevity, educational attainment, nutritional status, and income in adulthood. To do so, we collected individual-level administrative records of applicants to the Mothers’ Pension program — the first government-sponsored welfare program in the United States (1911-1935) — and matched them to census, WWII, and death records. Male children of accepted applicants lived one year longer than those of rejected mothers. They also obtained one-third more years of schooling, were less likely to be underweight, and had higher income in adulthood than children of rejected mothers.
The charity GiveDirectly, which is planning a major basic income trial in Kenya, has published a blog post (dated September 20) on the importance of the study. GiveDirectly points out, for one, that most previous research on cash transfers focuses on developing countries, and little research has been published about the US.
Aizer, Anna, Shari Eli, Joseph Ferrie and Adriana Lleras-Muney. 2016. “The Long-Run Impact of Cash Transfers to Poor Families.” American Economic Review, 106(4): 935-71.
Photo CC BY 2.0 Tony Fischer