AEA in the News Archive


In a piece about the consequences of trade with China, the NYT Upshot blog covered a 2013 article from the American Economic Review. In The China Syndrome: Local Labor Market Effects of Import Competition in the United States, the authors compare different U.S. regions, some of which were exposed to new competition from Chinese imports during the 1990s and some of which were less affected thanks to a different industry mix. The more-exposed regions did see significantly more job losses over the 1990-2007 period, but the pain was eased by an increase flow of unemployment benefits and disability payments to these areas.
Posted on: Jan 28 2016

A recent episode of the Freakonomics podast about the gender pay gap cited past AEA president Claudia Goldin's 2014 presidential address. In A Grand Gender Convergence: Its Last Chapter, Goldin blames the bulk of the gender pay gap on firms' tendency to disproportionately reward employees who work very long hours, and who work particular hours. Certain sectors, like technology, science, and health, have been quicker to adopt new compensation schemes that are more flexible and less disadvantageous for part-time workers.
Posted on: Jan 14 2016

2015

The Huffington Post covered a paper appearing in this month's issue of the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics. In The Contribution of the Minimum Wage to US Wage Inequality over Three Decades: A Reassessment, the authors use updated data and a new methodological approach to study the link between wage inequality and the minimum wage. They find that a higher real minimum wage can reduce inequality, but that the effect is "substantially less" powerful than previously thought.
Posted on: 2015

BBC News covered an article in the American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics that takes a historical look at assassination attempts. In Hit or Miss? The Effect of Assassinations on Institutions and War, authors Benjamin Jones and Benjamin Olken find evidence that assassinations have had an impact on the growth of democracy and increased the intensity of wars, but also that successful assassination attempts are becoming more rare. The risk of assassination for heads of state peaked about 100 years ago but has fallen 70% since then.
Posted on: 2015

In an article about tax subsidies for renewable energy sources, Vox cited a 2014 paper from the American Economic Review: Papers and Proceedings. In How Effective Are U.S. Renewable Energy Subsidies in Cutting Greenhouse Gases?, the authors conclude that two major subsidy programs have reduced U.S. carbon emissions by only 0.3%. The effect is smaller than might be expected in part because the subsidies reduce the price of gas to motorists, which in turn encourages more gasoline use and more emissions.
Posted on: 2015

The The Charlotte Business Journal covered a study about the effect of shale gas wells on home prices that appears in this month's issue of the American Economic Review.
Posted on: 2015

NPR's Morning Edition covered a recent American Economic Review article in a story about rising penalties for failing to purchase insurance under the Affordable Care Act. In Adverse Selection and an Individual Mandate: When Theory Meets Practice, the authors study the Massachusetts health reform experience in the mid-2000s. They find that the introduction of a penalty successfully combatted adverse selection in the state's health insurance markets, and that a higher penalty would have been even better.
Posted on: 2015

Vox covered a paper on earned-income tax credit (EITC) benefits appearing in the November issue of the American Economic Review. In Psychological Frictions and the Incomplete Take-Up of Social Benefits: Evidence from an IRS Field Experiment, authors Saurabh Bhargava and Dayanand Manoli find that many low-income taxpayers who are eligible for the EITC fail to claim it due to low awareness and poor understanding of the benefits, rather than stigma or application costs. As much as $7 billion goes unclaimed each year.
Posted on: 2015

A recent piece in the Atlantic cited a 1994 piece from the Journal of Economic Perspectives. In Intergenerational Transfers and the Accumulation of Wealth, authors William Gale and John Karl Scholz analyze data from the Survey of Consumer Finances and conclude that a large fraction of household wealth is derived not from household members' income but from bequests and gifts from parents and other family members. They find that gifts account for about 20% of net worth, while bequests account for more than 30%.
Posted on: 2015

The Boston Globe covered an article in the American Economic Review about the difficulty of crafting effective environmental regulations. In Clearing the Air? The Effects of Gasoline Content Regulation on Air Quality, authors Maximilian Auffhammer and Ryan Kellogg study a measure to reduce ozone pollution by restricting volatile organic chemical (VOC) emissions. They find that the regulation gave businesses so much flexibility that they could continue emitting the most harmful VOCs and still be in compliance by reducing other VOCs.
Posted on: 2015

Quartz covered a recent piece in the Journal of Economic Perspectives about the declining quality of government survey data. In Household Surveys in Crisis, the authors highlight several problems in household surveys, including low response rates and measurement error. They call for increased use of administrative data (like payment records from the Food Stamp Program and the Social Security Administration) to complement and verify survey results.
Posted on: 2015

The Upshot blog cited a recent article in the American Economic Review. In Health Insurance for "Humans": Information Frictions, Plan Choice, and Consumer Welfare, the authors find that employees at a large firm with various health insurance plans had numerous misconceptions about the offered plans. These misconceptions were found to significantly distort some employees' choices about which plan to take up.
Posted on: 2015

The Christian Science Monitor covered a paper from the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy about the effects of early school start times on student achievement. In A's from Zzzz's? The Causal Effect of School Start Time on the Academic Achievement of Adolescents, the authors study cadets at the U.S. Air Force Academy, which features random assignment of course schedules, mandatory attendance, and uniform grading standards. They find that students assigned to a course starting before 8 AM on a given day of the week had significantly worse grades in all courses taken that day.
Posted on: 2015

Bloomberg covered a July article in the American Economic Review by Heidi Williams, who was recently named a 2015 MacArthur Fellow. In "Do Firms Underinvest in Long-Term Research? Evidence from Cancer Clinical Trials," Williams and her coauthors find evidence that cancer pharmaceutical research is distorted toward projects with short-term payoffs. See our highlight of the paper here.
Posted on: 2015

A recent study on the relationship between new roads and traffic from the American Economic Review was cited in The Atlantic. In The Fundamental Law of Road Congestion: Evidence from US Cities, authors Gilles Duration and Matthew Turner find that new lanes on interstate highways and other major roads are quickly filled with new cars and trucks and do not tend to reduce congestion. They conclude that congestion pricing, rather than roadway construction, is the most promising tool for combating persistent traffic.
Posted on: 2015

Three articles on the future of automation and labor markets from last month's Journal of Economic Perspectives symposium were featured on the Free Exchange Blog in the Economist.
Posted on: 2015

The Economist highlighted a new paper in the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics about peer effects on high school students. In The Girl Next Door: The Effect of Opposite Gender Friends on High School Achievement, author Andrew Hill takes advantage of the fact that some students happen to live in neighborhoods with more schoolmates of the opposite gender. He finds that having a higher share of opposite-gender friends lowers a student's GPA across a range of subjects.
Posted on: 2015

FiveThirtyEight covered the ongoing debate over teacher evaluation, citing two companion papers that appeared together in the September 2014 issue of the American Economic Review. In "Measuring the Impacts of Teachers" I and II the authors construct "value-added" estimates for teachers in a large urban school district by observing how students' test scores change from year to year as they pass through each teacher's classroom. They find that their teacher value-added scores are not significantly biased and are potent predictors of students' later-life outcomes.
Posted on: 2015

The Washington Post's Monkey Cage blog cited work by Dani Rodrik, including an article appearing in the Journal of Economic Perspectives last year. In When Ideas Trump Interests: Preferences, Worldviews, and Policy Innovations, Rodrik argues that "policy entrepreneurship" – the creation and spread of new public policy ideas in the political marketplace – should be taken more seriously by economists.
Posted on: 2015

Wonkblog covered an article published this month in the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics. In Saving Lives at Birth: The Impact of Home Births on Infant Outcomes the authors study a sample of over 300,000 Dutch women and find that home birth increases the risk of newborn mortality, especially for low-income women, likely because of reduced access to medical technologies after delivery.
Posted on: 2015

A Wall Street Journal analysis of potential merger activity in the health insurance industry cited a study published in the American Economic Review. In "Paying a Premium on Your Premium? Consolidation in the US Health Insurance Industry," the authors found that a 1999 merger between two large U.S. health insurers drove up customer premiums and depressed doctors' earnings in certain parts of the country.
Posted on: 2015

Two articles on tax enforcement and compliance from last year's Journal of Economic Perspectives symposium were recently featured on the Undercover Economist blog in the Financial Times.
Posted on: 2015

New research from the current issue of the Journal of Economic Perspectives titled "Systematic Bias and Nontransparency in US Social Security Administration Forecasts" was featured in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Barron's, and USA Today. The authors document a pattern of overly-optimistic forecasts by the Social Security Administration in recent years.
Posted on: 2015

The Wall Street Journal recently highlighted a World Bank conference on financial services for the poor which featured work appearing in the January 2015 issue of AEJ: Applied Economics. The issue included six randomized studies of microcredit spanning four continents that found little evidence of transformative results -- in most cases, microcredit provided only a temporary boost in income for borrowers. However, there is suggestive evidence that the effects may be more positive for certain sub-populations, and critics contend that it may still be too early to tell whether these interventions will ultimately prove to be broadly effective.

The data from each study is available on this website, and researchers are encouraged to continue the analysis. An overview article from the issue summarizing the results has been made available by the AEA. A webcast of the proceedings from the conference can be found here.
Posted on: 2015

The Washington Examiner and Bloomberg discuss French economist Thomas Piketty’s recent efforts to clarify his findings for rising equality in his latest article published in the Journal of Economic Perspectives study and in his upcoming article for the AER: Papers and Proceedings issue to be published this Spring.
Posted on: 2015

New research from the February issue of the American Economic Review titled, “Thar SHE blows? Gender, Competition, and Bubbles in Experimental Asset Markets” was recently discussed in Quartz. The paper covers experimental evidence on the differences between the sexes when it comes to trading behavior.
Posted on: 2015

The results of a new study by Koichiro Ito of Boston University were recently presented at the 2015 annual meeting of the American Economic Association and points to the surprising economic power of polite reminders when it comes to saving energy. The Washington Post covers the study here.
Posted on: 2015

"In the 2014 calendar year, the American Economic Association listed 3,051 jobs, an increase of 9.4 percent from the total in 2013," notes Inside Higher Ed from their story about a positive trend in economics jobs.
Posted on: 2015

The Atlantic reports on recent research from the Journal of Economic Perspectives concluding left-handed people earn significantly less than right-handed people.
Posted on: 2015

2014

In a piece titled Lazy Graduate Students? The Economist reports on a newly published article from the Journal of Economic Perspectives revealing some surprising results about the research productivity of new PhDs in economics.
Posted on: 2014

A well-regarded American Economic Review study of 22 countries by two Cornell University economists was cited in a story from the New York Times covering the impact of paid maternity leave and women in the workplace.
Posted on: 2014

The Atlantic recently examined a study in the American Economic Review suggesting a social snowball effect may counteract the stigma that’s attached to paternity leave for men and their co-workers.
Posted on: 2014

University of Chicago economics professor, Matthew Gentzkow, who is the AEA's 2014 John Bates Clark Medal recipient, discusses the future of economics, the state of the media ecosphere, and virtues of "data hustle" in this interview from Quartz.
Posted on: 2014

A recent article in The Economist examines higher education endowments and university behaviors including new research presented in a paper from the latest edition of the American Economic Review.
Posted on: 2014

"For economists, the tradition of keeping mum—at least as a national organization—is long and proud. 'The association as such will take no partisan attitude, nor will it commit its members to any position on practical economic questions,' the economic association states on its website. Those policies, says its president, William D. Nordhaus, a professor at Yale University, by email, 'have served it well through hot and cold wars.'"

"Not only do economists vary widely in their opinions of economic policy, he notes, but many have participated in helping shape such policies. Putting forth statements on political issues would be 'unnecessary, polarizing, controversy-stoking, and a distraction from the real and important work of economic research and education,' he says. (Mr. Nordhaus was, of course, speaking for himself and not the association.)"

Read the whole story in the The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscribers only).
Posted on: 2014

From ASSA 2014: The Wall Street Journal reports on the AEA's CSWEP committee's efforts in mentoring early-career female economists and the program's expanding influence on similar programs being developed overseas. Read the full article here.
Posted on: 2014

2013

"The job market could be picking up for economics grad students," reports Brenda Cronin in the Wall Street Journal. Get the inside story on what her sources are saying before you head to ASSA in January!
Posted on: 2013

The Chronicle of Higher Education just published "Cool Head on Global Warming," an in-depth look at the new book by 2014 AEA President, William Nordhaus entitled, "The Climate Casino: Risk, Uncertainty and Economics for a Warming World" (Yale University Press).
Posted on: 2013

The Atlantic Cities provides a thorough examination of Clifford Winston's (Brooking Institution) research, "On The Performance of the U.S. Transportation System: Caution Ahead," from the latest edition of the Journal of Economic Literature (JEL).
Posted on: 2013

Upcoming research by Yang Wang, a health economist at Lafayette College, indicates that some smokers believe age, race, and parental longevity influence their life expectancy more than smoking does. Access the news brief here, or the forthcoming article from the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics.
Posted on: 2013

Fareed Zakaria (in the Washington Post) joins the ongoing discussion about declining mobility in the U.S. and the “Top 1 Percent” found in a series of essays from the Journal of Economic Perspectives summer symposium. Read them all here!
Posted on: 2013

With a new study other researchers are calling "the most detailed portrait yet of income mobility in the United States," Raj Chetty, a recent AEA John Bates Clark Medal winner, continues to gain attention for his works. See coverage in the New York Times and Boston Globe.
Posted on: 2013

Gregory Mankiw's (Harvard University) article about income inequality from the summer issue of the Journal of Economic Perspectives is already generating a lot of media buzz including this coverage by PBS NEWSHOUR.
Posted on: 2013

An article in the Journal of Economic Perspectives entitled, "The Growth of Finance" by Harvard Business School professors, Robin Greenwood and David Scharfstein, was recently explored by the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.
Posted on: 2013

U.S. News & World Report cites Princeton-based Burton Malkiel's article in the Journal of Economic Perspectives as a preferred source of "sound financial advice" for investors.
Posted on: 2013

The Huffington Post reports on a study addressing the influence of lifestyle factors on shrinking height in the elderly published in the April issue of AEJ: Applied Economics.
Posted on: 2013

Michael Frakes' (Cornell Law School) article on medical liability standards from the February issue of the American Economic Review was discussed as part of a Bloomberg opinion piece on medical malpractice.
Posted on: 2013

Slate Magazine recently discussed former AEA president, George Akerlof's classic behavioral research and a 2012 American Economic Review study conducted by German and Swiss researchers to explore how gifting can motivate some employees more than cash incentives do in the workplace.
Posted on: 2013

The Huffington Post recently covered a Journal of Economic Perpsectives paper entitled, "The Case Against Patents." Authors Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine of the St. Louis Federal Reserve argue to abolish the American patent system, saying there's "no evidence" patents improve productivity and that they have a "negative" effect on innovation. The economists conclude that problems with patents in fact run much deeper than many critics of the recent system have emphasized. [Full-Text Article]
Posted on: 2013








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February 2016 AER

February 2016 AEJ: Policy

February 2016 AEJ: Micro

January 2016 AEJ: Macro

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