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Quarterly Journal of Economics
Journal Prestige (SJR): 29.602
Citation Impact (citeScore): 11
Number of Followers: 307  
 
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
ISSN (Print) 0033-5533 - ISSN (Online) 1531-4650
Published by Oxford University Press Homepage  [396 journals]
  • The Impacts of Neighborhoods on Intergenerational Mobility I: Childhood
           Exposure Effects*
    • Authors: Chetty R; Hendren N.
      Pages: 1107 - 1162
      Abstract: We show that the neighborhoods in which children grow up shape their earnings, college attendance rates, and fertility and marriage patterns by studying more than 7 million families who move across commuting zones and counties in the United States. Exploiting variation in the age of children when families move, we find that neighborhoods have significant childhood exposure effects: the outcomes of children whose families move to a better neighborhood—as measured by the outcomes of children already living there—improve linearly in proportion to the amount of time they spend growing up in that area, at a rate of approximately 4% per year of exposure. We distinguish the causal effects of neighborhoods from confounding factors by comparing the outcomes of siblings within families, studying moves triggered by displacement shocks, and exploiting sharp variation in predicted place effects across birth cohorts, genders, and quantiles to implement overidentification tests. The findings show that neighborhoods affect intergenerational mobility primarily through childhood exposure, helping reconcile conflicting results in the prior literature.
      PubDate: Sat, 10 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy007
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • The Impacts of Neighborhoods on Intergenerational Mobility II:
           County-Level Estimates*
    • Authors: Chetty R; Hendren N.
      Pages: 1163 - 1228
      Abstract: We estimate the causal effect of each county in the United States on children’s incomes in adulthood. We first estimate a fixed effects model that is identified by analyzing families who move across counties with children of different ages. We then use these fixed effect estimates to (i) quantify how much places matter for intergenerational mobility, (ii) construct forecasts of the causal effect of growing up in each county that can be used to guide families seeking to move to opportunity, and (iii) characterize which types of areas produce better outcomes. For children growing up in low-income families, each year of childhood exposure to a one standard deviation (std. dev.) better county increases income in adulthood by 0.5%. There is substantial variation in counties’ causal effects even within metro areas. Counties with less concentrated poverty, less income inequality, better schools, a larger share of two-parent families, and lower crime rates tend to produce better outcomes for children in poor families. Boys’ outcomes vary more across areas than girls’ outcomes, and boys have especially negative outcomes in highly segregated areas. Areas that generate better outcomes have higher house prices on average, but our approach uncovers many “opportunity bargains”—places that generate good outcomes but are not very expensive.
      PubDate: Sat, 10 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy006
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • High-Frequency Identification of Monetary Non-Neutrality: The Information
           Effect*
    • Authors: Nakamura E; Steinsson J.
      Pages: 1283 - 1330
      Abstract: We present estimates of monetary non-neutrality based on evidence from high-frequency responses of real interest rates, expected inflation, and expected output growth. Our identifying assumption is that unexpected changes in interest rates in a 30-minute window surrounding scheduled Federal Reserve announcements arise from news about monetary policy. In response to an interest rate hike, nominal and real interest rates increase roughly one-for-one, several years out into the term structure, while the response of expected inflation is small. At the same time, forecasts about output growth also increase—the opposite of what standard models imply about a monetary tightening. To explain these facts, we build a model in which Fed announcements affect beliefs not only about monetary policy but also about other economic fundamentals. Our model implies that these information effects play an important role in the overall causal effect of monetary policy shocks on output.
      PubDate: Mon, 29 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy004
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • Ranking Firms Using Revealed Preference*
    • Authors: Sorkin I.
      Pages: 1331 - 1393
      Abstract: This article estimates workers’ preferences for firms by studying the structure of employer-to-employer transitions in U.S. administrative data. The article uses a tool from numerical linear algebra to measure the central tendency of worker flows, which is closely related to the ranking of firms revealed by workers’ choices. There is evidence for compensating differentials when workers systematically move to lower-paying firms in a way that cannot be accounted for by layoffs or differences in recruiting intensity. The estimates suggest that compensating differentials account for over half of the firm component of the variance of earnings.
      PubDate: Wed, 17 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy001
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • Divergent Paths: A New Perspective on Earnings Differences Between Black
           and White Men Since 1940
    • Authors: Bayer P; Charles K.
      Pages: 1459 - 1501
      Abstract: We present new evidence on the evolution of black–white earnings differences among all men, including both workers and nonworkers. We study two measures: (i) the level earnings gap—the racial earnings difference at a given quantile; and (ii) the earnings rank gap—the difference between a black man's percentile in the black earnings distribution and the position he would hold in the white earnings distribution. After narrowing from 1940 to the mid-1970s, the median black–white level earnings gap has since grown as large as it was in 1950. At the same time, the median black man's relative position in the earnings distribution has remained essentially constant since 1940, so that the improvement then worsening of median relative earnings have come mainly from the stretching and narrowing of the overall earnings distribution. Black men at higher percentiles have experienced significant advances in relative earnings since 1940, due mainly to strong positional gains among those with college educations. Large relative schooling gains by blacks at the median and below have been more than counteracted by rising return to skill in the labor market, which has increasingly penalized remaining racial differences in schooling at the bottom of the distribution.
      PubDate: Tue, 30 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy003
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • The Macroeconomic Effects of Government Asset Purchases: Evidence from
           Postwar U.S. Housing Credit Policy*
    • Authors: Fieldhouse A; Mertens K, Ravn M.
      Pages: 1503 - 1560
      Abstract: We document the portfolio activity of federal housing agencies and provide evidence on its impact on mortgage markets and the economy. Through a narrative analysis, we identify historical policy changes leading to expansions or contractions in agency mortgage holdings. Based on those regulatory events that we classify as unrelated to short-run cyclical or credit market shocks, we find that an increase in mortgage purchases by the agencies boosts mortgage lending, in particular refinancing, and lowers mortgage rates. Agency purchases also influence prices in other asset markets, stimulate residential investment, and expand homeownership. We compare these effects to those of conventional monetary policy shocks, and we provide evidence on the interactions between housing credit and monetary policies.
      PubDate: Wed, 17 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy002
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • Do Energy Efficiency Investments Deliver' Evidence from the
           Weatherization Assistance Program*
    • Authors: Fowlie M; Greenstone M, Wolfram C.
      Pages: 1597 - 1644
      Abstract: A growing number of policies and programs aim to increase investment in energy efficiency, because conventional wisdom suggests that people fail to take up these investments even though they have positive private returns and generate environmental benefits. Many explanations for this energy efficiency gap have been put forward, but there has been surprisingly little field testing of whether the conventional wisdom is correct. This article reports on the results of an experimental evaluation of the nation’s largest residential energy efficiency program—the Weatherization Assistance Program—conducted on a sample of approximately 30,000 households in Michigan. The findings suggest that the upfront investment costs are about twice the actual energy savings. Furthermore, the model-projected savings are more than three times the actual savings. Although this might be attributed to the “rebound” effect—when demand for energy end uses increases as a result of greater efficiency—the article fails to find evidence of significantly higher indoor temperatures at weatherized homes. Even when accounting for the broader societal benefits derived from emissions reductions, the costs still substantially outweigh the benefits; the average rate of return is approximately −7.8% annually.
      PubDate: Mon, 29 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjy005
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2018)
       
  • Interfirm Relationships and Business Performance*
    • Authors: Cai J; Szeidl A.
      Pages: 1229 - 1282
      Abstract: We organized business associations for the owner-managers of young Chinese firms to study the effect of business networks on firm performance. We randomized 2,820 firms into small groups whose managers held monthly meetings for one year, and into a “no-meetings” control group. We find the following. (i) The meetings increased firm revenue by 8.1%, and also significantly increased profit, factors, inputs, the number of partners, borrowing, and a management score. (ii) These effects persisted one year after the conclusion of the meetings. (iii) Firms randomized to have better peers exhibited higher growth. We exploit additional interventions to document concrete channels. (iv) Managers shared exogenous business-relevant information, particularly when they were not competitors, showing that the meetings facilitated learning from peers. (v) Managers created more business partnerships in the regular than in other one-time meetings, showing that the meetings improved supplier-client matching.
      PubDate: Wed, 20 Dec 2017 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjx049
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2017)
       
  • Long-Range Growth: Economic Development in the Global Network of Air
           Links*
    • Authors: Campante F; Yanagizawa-Drott D.
      Pages: 1395 - 1458
      Abstract: We study the impact of international long-distance flights on the global spatial allocation of economic activity. To identify causal effects, we exploit variation due to regulatory and technological constraints, which gives rise to a discontinuity in connectedness between cities at a distance of 6,000 miles. We show that improving an airport’s position in the network of air links has a positive effect on local economic activity, as captured by satellite-measured night lights. We find that air links increase business links, showing that the movement of people fosters the movement of capital. In particular, this is driven mostly by capital flowing from high-income to middle-income (but not low-income) countries. Taken together, the results suggest that increasing interconnectedness induces links between businesses and generates economic activity at the local level but also gives rise to increased spatial inequality locally, and potentially globally.
      PubDate: Wed, 20 Dec 2017 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjx050
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2017)
       
  • Status Goods: Experimental Evidence from Platinum Credit Cards*
    • Authors: Bursztyn L; Ferman B, Fiorin S, et al.
      Pages: 1561 - 1595
      Abstract: This article provides field-experimental evidence on status goods. We work with an Indonesian bank that markets platinum credit cards to high-income customers. In a first experiment, we show that demand for the platinum card exceeds demand for a nondescript control product with identical benefits, suggesting demand for the pure status aspect of the card. Transaction data reveal that platinum cards are more likely to be used in social contexts, implying social image motivations. In a second experiment, we provide evidence of positional externalities from the consumption of these status goods. A final experiment provides suggestive evidence that increasing self-esteem causally reduces demand for status goods, indicating that social image might be a substitute for self-image.
      PubDate: Wed, 20 Dec 2017 00:00:00 GMT
      DOI: 10.1093/qje/qjx048
      Issue No: Vol. 133, No. 3 (2017)
       
 
 
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