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Job-finding rates and wages fell for new graduates entering the labor market in 2009 and 2010, but poorer prospects for young workers actually began before the recession and continued through the recovery. There has been a substantial deterioration in the employment prospects of recent college graduates, Jesse Rothstein finds in The Lost Generation? Labor Market Outcomes for Post Great Recession Entrants (NBER Working Paper 27516). Cohorts that graduated during...
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In 2017, securities issued by corporations based in tax havens — mostly offshore financial centers — accounted for 10 percent of the value of outstanding corporate bonds worldwide and about 8 percent of global equity. Official statistics on foreign investment show that investors from the United States, the eurozone, and other large developed nations invest relatively little in large, fast-growing, emerging markets. These statistics are misleading, according to the...
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One of the statistical challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic has been determining what proportion of the population has been infected with it. While we know how many people have received a positive test result, most have not been tested and tests do not have perfect accuracy. A lack of information on the number of infections complicates our understanding of the virus. The infection fatality rate, an important indicator of the health risk associated with a COVID-19...
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The implied magnitudes of the reductions in infant mortality from Medicaid are quite large: approximately 1.4 fewer infant deaths per 1,000 live births in the severely affected counties. What role can health insurance play in ameliorating the health effects of a pandemic? In The Value of Health Insurance during a Crisis: Effects of Medicaid Implementation on Pandemic Influenza Mortality (NBER Working Paper 27120), researchers Karen Clay, Joshua A. Lewis, Edson R....
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The reformulation of OxyContin had the unintended consequence of increasing overall overdose rates in locations where OxyContin had initially been misused. Fatal drug overdoses in the United States have risen dramatically in the past decade, but the trend has been far worse in some states than in others. Between 2009 and 2017, the growth of fatal overdoses was 27 per 100,000 residents in the 10 most severely affected states, in contrast to less than one per 100,...

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    Article
      The U.S. Social Security Disability Insurance (DI) program is designed to insure workers against earnings losses arising from a severe and long-lasting disability. Previous research suggests that about 40 percent of DI applicants have at least some ability to work. For those in this group, the decision to apply for DI benefits may be sensitive to economic conditions. If partially disabled individuals have a suitable job (perhaps one that accommodates their...
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    Article
    Sharp reductions in assaults and robberies after the installation of intense streetlights suggest a potential low-cost way to deter crime. A small change in a neighborhood environment, like extra nighttime lighting, can have a large effect in reducing crime, new research suggests. When researchers partnered with New York City police and municipal officials to place lighting towers randomly in some of the city's highest-crime public housing complexes, in 2016,...
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    Article
    Full scholarships to low-income high school graduates in Nebraska raised college enrollment and completion, especially for those with the least academic preparation and greatest family disadvantage. The goal of most financial aid programs is to increase educational attainment for prospective students who might not otherwise be able to enroll in college or to complete a degree. In Marginal Effects of Merit Aid for Low-Income Students (NBER Working Paper 27834),...
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    Article
    Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive disease of the brain that is the leading cause of dementia in the United States, afflicting an estimated five million Americans. As shown in the figure, the prevalence, costs, and human toll of this disease are vast, and expected to increase over time. Given these sobering statistics, Alzheimer’s disease is a critical priority for research and public policy in the United States. In order to encourage new economic research on this...
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    Article
    Health care provided by specialists is associated with greater treatment intensity than health care by general practitioners, raising questions about the costs and benefits of the additional care. Researcher Joseph J. Doyle, Jr., in Physician Characteristics and Patient Survival: Evidence from Physician Availability (NBER Working Paper 27458), presents evidence that substantiates the higher costs of care by specialists, and shows that this care by specialists benefits...

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