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The Changing Safety Net for Low-Income Parents and Their Children: Structural or Cyclical Changes in Income Support Policy?

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  • Additional Information
    • Source:
      Publisher: Duke University Press Country of Publication: United States NLM ID: 0226703 Publication Model: Print Cited Medium: Internet ISSN: 1533-7790 (Electronic) Linking ISSN: 00703370 NLM ISO Abbreviation: Demography Subsets: MEDLINE
    • Publication Information:
      Publication: 2021- : Durham, NC : Duke University Press
      Original Publication: Washington, etc., Population Assn. of America.
    • Subject Terms:
    • Abstract:
      Refundable tax credits and food assistance are the largest transfer programs available to able-bodied working poor and near-poor families in the United States, and simultaneous participation in these programs has more than doubled since the early 2000s. To understand this growth, we construct a series of two-year panels from the 1981-2013 waves of the Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement to estimate the effect of state labor-market conditions, federal and state transfer program policy choices, and household demographics governing joint participation in food and refundable tax credit programs. Overall, changing policy drives much of the increase in the simultaneous, biennial use of food assistance and refundable tax credits. This stands in stark contrast from the factors accounting for the growth in food assistance alone, where cyclical and structural labor market factors account for at least one-half of the growth, and demographics play a more prominent role. Moreover, since 2000, the business cycle factors as the leading determinant in biennial participation decisions in food programs and refundable tax credits, suggesting a recent strengthening in the relationship between economic conditions and transfer programs.
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    • Grant Information:
      P2C HD047873 United States HD NICHD NIH HHS
    • Contributed Indexing:
      Keywords: Additional child tax credit*; Business cycle*; Earned income tax credit*; Supplemental nutrition assistance program*; Welfare reform*
    • Publication Date:
      Date Created: 20180131 Date Completed: 20181211 Latest Revision: 20181211
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