NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Mi Luo

Emory University
1602 Fishburne Ln.
Rm 330
Atlanta, GA 30307

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Institutional Affiliation: Emory University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

May 2019Assets and Job Choice: Student Debt, Wages and Amenities
with Simon Mongey: w25801
If consumption and non-wage amenities of work enter utility, holding few assets may induce a trade-off between wages and amenities when searching for a job. We establish this in a model of search with asset accumulation, extended to accommodate amenities. We then provide empirical evidence of this trade-off in the context of student debt, finding that higher debt causes graduates to accept jobs with higher wages and lower job satisfaction. In a representative sample of college graduates, we infer causality by exploiting within-college, across cohort changes in financial aid. A quantitative extension of our theoretical framework that explicitly models student debt accounts well for our empirical results. Identifying the utility value of amenities through observed search behavior, we find th...
November 2015Wealth Distribution and Social Mobility in the US: A Quantitative Approach
with Jess Benhabib, Alberto Bisin: w21721
This paper attempts to quantitatively identify the factors that drive wealth dynamics in the U.S. and are consistent with its observed skewed cross-sectional distribution and social mobility. We concentrate on three critical factors: a skewed and persistent distribution of earnings, differential saving and bequest rates across wealth levels, and capital income risk. All of these factors are necessary for matching both distribution and mobility, with a distinct role in inducing wealth accumulation near the borrowing constraints, contributing to the thick top tail of wealth, and affecting upward and/or downward social mobility.

Published: Jess Benhabib & Alberto Bisin & Mi Luo, 2019. "Wealth Distribution and Social Mobility in the US: A Quantitative Approach," American Economic Review, vol 109(5), pages 1623-1647. citation courtesy of

 
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