NBER Working Papers by Christian A. Gregory

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Working Papers

December 2016Who Benefits Most from SNAP? A Study of Food Security and Food Spending
with Partha Deb: w22977
We study the effects of SNAP participation on food insecurity and food spending using finite mixture models that allow for a priori unspecified heterogeneous effects. We identify a low food security subgroup comprising a third of the population for whom SNAP participation increases the probability of high food security by 20-30 percentage points. There is no affect of SNAP on the remaining two-thirds of the population. SNAP increases food spending in the previous week by $50-$65 for a low modal spending subgroup comprising two-thirds of the population, with no effect for the remaining third of the population.
May 2009Where Does the Wage Penalty Bite?
with Christopher J. Ruhm: w14984
The literature examining the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and wages has fairly consistently found that BMI has a negative impact on earnings for women, and less (if any) consequences for men. In this paper, we relax the assumption -- largely unquestioned in this research -- that the conditional mean of wages is linear or piecewise linear in body mass index (BMI). Using data from the 1986 and 1999-2005 Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we estimate semi-parametric wage models that allow earnings to vary with BMI in a highly flexible manner. For women, the results show that earnings peak at levels far below the clinical threshold of "obesity" or even "overweight". For men, our main estimates suggest a reasonably flat BMI-wage profile that peaks early in the "overweight" category. ...

Published: Where Does the Wage Penalty Bite?, Christian A. Gregory, Christopher J. Ruhm. in Economic Aspects of Obesity, Grossman and Mocan. 2011

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