Monthly government transfer programs create cycles of consumption that track the timing of benefit receipt. If these cycles correspond to critical moments for student learning and achievement, the timing of transfers may have important long-run implications for low-income students. In this paper we exploit state-level variation in the staggered timing of nutritional assistance benefit issuance to analyze effects on academic achievement. Using individual-level data from a large national college admission exam, we find taking this high-stakes exam during the last two weeks of the SNAP benefit cycle reduces test scores and lowers the probability of attending a four-year college.
Bond, Timothy N., Jillian B. Carr, Analisa Packham, and Jonathan Smith.
"Hungry for Success? SNAP Timing, High-Stakes Exam Performance, and College Attendance."
American Economic Journal: Economic Policy,
State and Local Government: Health; Education; Welfare; Public Pensions
Health: Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
Analysis of Education
Higher Education; Research Institutions
Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty: Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs