Elizabeth M. Caucutt

Department of Economics
Social Science Center
The Univeristy of Western Ontario
London, ON N6A 5C2, Canada

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

March 2015Correlation, Consumption, Confusion, or Constraints: Why do Poor Children Perform so Poorly?
with Lance Lochner, Youngmin Park: w21023
The economic and social mobility of a generation may be largely determined by the time it enters school given early developing and persistent gaps in child achievement by family income and the importance of adolescent skill levels for educational attainment and lifetime earnings. After providing new evidence of important differences in early child investments by family income, we study four leading mechanisms thought to explain these gaps: an intergenerational correlation in ability, a consumption value of investment, information frictions, and credit constraints. In order to better determine which of these mechanisms influence family investments in children, we evaluate the extent to which these mechanisms also explain other important stylized facts related to the marginal returns on in...

Published: Elizabeth M. Caucutt & Lance Lochner & Youngmin Park, 2016. "Correlation, Consumption, Confusion, or Constraints: Why Do Poor Children Perform so Poorly?," The Scandinavian Journal of Economics, .

October 2012Early and Late Human Capital Investments, Borrowing Constraints, and the Family
with Lance Lochner: w18493
This paper investigates the importance of family borrowing constraints in determining human capital investments in children at early and late ages. We begin by providing new evidence from the Children of the NLSY (CNLSY) which suggests that borrowing constraints bind for at least some families with young children. Next, we develop an intergenerational model of lifecycle human capital accumulation to study the role of early versus late investments in children when credit markets are imperfect. We analytically establish the importance of dynamic complementarity in investment for the qualitative nature of investment responses to income and policy changes. We extend the framework to incorporate dynasties and use data from the CNLSY to calibrate the model. Our benchmark steady state suggest...
January 2007The Farm, the City, and the Emergence of Social Security
with Thomas F. Cooley, Nezih Guner: w12854
During the period from 1880 to 1950, publicly managed retirement security programs became an important part of the social fabric in most advanced economies. In this paper we study the social, demographic and economic origins of social security. We describe a model economy in which demographics, technology, and social security are linked together. We study an economy with two locations (sectors), the farm (agricultural) and the city (industrial). The decision to migrate from rural to urban locations is endogenous and linked to productivity differences between the two locations and survival probabilities. Furthermore, the level of social security is determined by majority voting. We show that a calibrated version of this economy is consistent with the historical transformation in the United ...

Published: Elizabeth Caucutt & Thomas Cooley & Nezih Guner, 2013. "The farm, the city, and the emergence of social security," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 1-32, March. citation courtesy of

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