The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a central component of the U.S. safety net, benefiting about 25 million families. Using variation in the federal and state EITC, this paper evaluates the long-term impact of EITC exposure during childhood on the health of young adults. We find that an additional $100, or a 3% increase, in the average annual EITC exposure between birth and age 18 increases the likelihood of reporting very good or excellent health by 2.6% and decreases the likelihood of being obese by 4.1% between ages 22 and 27. The effects of EITC exposure are stronger for children raised in a single-parent household and for children with lower-educated parents.
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