Macroeconomics, Race, and Inclusive Growth
Friday, Jan. 6, 2023 10:15 AM - 12:15 PM (CST)
- Chair: Jamein Cunningham, Cornell University
Closing the Racial Gap or Keeping Up Appearances? Labor Force Participation and Demographic Change
AbstractThe gap between Black and White labor force participation has narrowed dramatically over the past 30 years, where post pandemic Black participation has reached parity and even slightly surpassed that of Whites. This paper is the first to seek to understand why this has happened. We show that the apparent improvement is largely a function of demographic trends rather than improved labor market opportunities. Participation rates among the young of both sexes and prime-age Black males remain well below those of Whites. However, there has been some convergence in youth participation rates, particularly for young Black women.
Potential effects of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Programs on Racial Wealth Gaps
AbstractTotal student loan borrowing differs considerably across racial groups. According to the 2019 Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF), conditional mean federal student loan debt for White, Black, and Hispanic households was $40,516, $42,571, $34,839, with more pronounced differences emerging in the full distribution of student loan debt. Previous research has shown that student loan debt contributes significantly to racial wealth gaps. Normally, student loans cannot be discharged in bankruptcy like other loans. One avenue for debt relief is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program which offers the opportunity for full forgiveness of federal student loans for eligible public and non-profit workers. However, since its inception in 2007, the uptake of the PSLF program has been low due to eligibility and administrative issues. To fix this issue, the Department of Education has temporarily allowed borrowers to qualify for retroactive forgiveness regardless of loan type as long as their loans are consolidated by October 31, 2022.
Using data from the last three rounds of the Survey of Consumer Finances, we examine the potential effects of existing PSLF programs on racial wealth gaps across the wealth distribution. Our study has important implications for understanding the potential benefits of reforming the existing student loan debt relief programs.
One Size Fits All? Updating the Debate on the Economic Consequences of Population Growth
AbstractWe attempt to uncover the medium-term relationship between economic growth per capita and population growth in 214 countries after stratifying the countries in terms of income level, rate of population growth, and geographic regions. After controlling for several covariates, we do not find empirical support for the usual one-size-fits-all hypotheses: In low-income countries, a relatively high population growth shows a negative relationship with economic growth, while higher income countries appear to benefit from a growing population. These results are held after changes in specifications. At the end, we briefly discuss some of the related implications such as externalities and provide some policy recommendations.
Barriers to Entry of Females/Minorities into Unions and Equalizing Role of Unions
AbstractThe focus of this study is to update the union premium of women to see if it has been affected by the overall changes in unionism. That is, is there a higher union premium for women as compared to men, despite recent declines in union density and bargaining activity? Further focus on the firm (establishment) size on the compensation structure. Additional emphasis will be placed on the race issue within the gender issue to detect if minority women gain more from membership than white women. The findings presented here should have important implications on the recruiting strategies of unions and the future of female participation rates.
Disparities in US House Elections After Redistricting
AbstractState legislatures control redistricting with little oversight. Recent political economy research provides evidence that voters are more likely to vote for candidates with similar characteristics to themselves. Using a novel dataset consisting of both race and gender identifiers for incumbents for US House of Representatives from 1976 to 2018, we test for differences in reelection probability between redistricting periods between non-white-male incumbents relative to their white male peers. Our results indicate that congressional redistricting negatively impacts all incumbents' chances for reelection and that this effect is larger for candidates belonging to historically discriminated groups.
- E0 - General
- J0 - General