Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/170889
Authors: 
Hartley, Robert Paul
Lamarche, Carlos
Year of Publication: 
2017
Series/Report no.: 
IZA Discussion Papers 10905
Abstract: 
Recent studies have used a distributional analysis of welfare reform experiments suggesting that some individuals reduce hours in order to opt into welfare, an example of behavioral-induced participation. Using data on Connecticut's Jobs First experiment, we find no evidence of behavioral-induced participation at the highest conditional quantiles of earnings. We offer a simple explanation for this: women assigned to Jobs First incur welfare participation costs to labor supply at higher earnings where the control group is welfare ineligible. Moreover, as expected, behavioral components and costs of program participation do not seem to play a differential role at other conditional quantiles where both groups are eligible to participate. Our findings show that a welfare program imposes an estimated cost up to 10 percent of quarterly earnings, and these costs can be heterogeneous throughout the conditional earnings distribution. The evidence is obtained by employing a semi-parametric panel quantile estimator for a model that allows women to vary arbitrarily in preferences and costs of participating in welfare programs.
Subjects: 
welfare reform
quantile regression
panel data
program participation
JEL: 
J22
I38
C21
C33
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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