16 February 2018

The Impact of International Patent Systems:
Evidence from European Patent Convention Accessions

Data from 14 countries that acceded to the European Patent Convention between 2000 and 2008 suggest foreigners seeking patent protection in the accession states immediately substituted European patents for domestic patents, but domestic entities had no discernible reaction to the new patent office, Bronwyn Hall and Christian Helmers report.

15 February 2018

The Impact of Recession-Driven School Spending Cuts

Examining how student performance responded to school spending cuts induced by the Great Recession, C. Kirabo Jackson, Cora Wigger, and Heyu Xiong find a 10 percent school budget cut reduced test scores by about 7.8 percent of a standard deviation, and that a 10 percent reduction during all four high school years was associated with 2.6 percentage points lower graduation rates.

14 February 2018

Dinner Table Human Capital and Entrepreneurship

A majority of male entrepreneurs start a firm in their fathers’ industry of employment or one that is closely related, but those with higher IQ scores are more likely to strike out into new areas of entrepreneurship, Hans K. Hvide and Paul Oyer find.

13 February 2018

The Internet and the Market for Used Books

As the internet has come to play a larger role in the used-book marketplace, a study by Glenn Ellison and Sara Fisher Ellison finds that sellers’ access to a larger potential market, and consumers’ access to more buying choices, has substantially increased both sellers’ profits and consumers’ surplus.

12 February 2018

The Consequences of Limiting Retail Investors' Leverage

Rawley Z. Heimer and Alp Simsek study U.S. regulations that took effect in 2010 and capped the leverage of previously unregulated retail traders of foreign exchange. They find that these regulations reduced trading volume by 23 percent and improved the portfolio returns of high-leverage traders.

9 February 2018

Parenthood, Family Friendly Firms,
and the Gender Gaps in Early Work Careers

Working in a comparatively family friendly firm or job diminishes the parenthood penalty to labor earnings and makes it easier for mothers to work more hours, V. Joseph Hotz, Per Johansson, and Arizo Karimi find. However, working in such firms or jobs also impedes mothers’ ability to climb career ladders.

8 February 2018

The Death of a Regulator:
Strict Supervision, Bank Lending and Business Activity

Dissolution of the federal Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS), which oversaw 10 percent of all U.S. depository institutions, resulted in stricter supervision of former OTS banks and was accompanied by an approximately 10 percent increase small business lending by those banks, research by João Granja and Christian Leuz shows.

7 February 2018

Productivity and Pay: Is the link broken?

Although median compensation and average compensation in the United States have diverged starkly from average labor productivity, Anna M. Stansbury and Lawrence H. Summers find that over 1973-2016, 1 percentage point higher productivity growth was associated with 0.7 to 1 percentage point higher median and average compensation growth. Factors unrelated to slowing productivity growth appear to have accounted for sluggish compensation growth in recent years.

6 February 2018

How Do Individuals Repay Their Debt?
The Balance-Matching Heuristic

Individuals with credit card debt do not allocate repayments to the highest interest rate card, which would minimize the cost of borrowing, John Gathergood, Neale Mahoney, Neil Stewart, and Joerg Weber find. Instead, many allocate repayments using a balance-matching heuristic under which the share of repayments on each card is matched to the share of balances on each card.

5 February 2018

Knowledge Spillovers and Learning in the Workplace:
Evidence from the U.S. Patent Office

Michael D. Frakes and Melissa F. Wasserman document strong evidence that the granting styles of surrounding peers influence patent examiners’ decisions whether to allow a patent. Such influences arise, at least in part, through knowledge spillovers rather than peer pressure.
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