Explaining Changes in Child Poverty Over the Past Four Decades

Brief

Explaining Changes in Child Poverty Over the Past Four Decades

September 16, 2013

Abstract

Child poverty ratcheted up from 1975 to 1993, then fell sharply until the 2001 recession, when child poverty began to rise again. Changes in family structure drove changes in child poverty 1975 to 1993, but changes in work drove changes in child poverty 1993 to 2011. Labor demand shifts seem to affect parents' work more than reactions to tax and transfer policy, suggesting that more generous government transfers may be called for.

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