Childhood Environment and Gender Gaps in Adulthood (American Economic Review Papers and Proceedings 106(5): 282-88, 2016), w/ Raj Chetty, Nathan Hendren, Frina Lin, and Ben Scuderi
Paper, Executive Summary, and Slides
- We show that differences in childhood environments play an important role in shaping gender gaps in adulthood by documenting three facts using population tax records for children born in the 1980s. First, gender gaps in employment rates, earnings, and college attendance vary substantially across the parental income distribution. Notably, the traditional gender gap in employment rates is reversed for children growing up in poor families: boys in families in the bottom quintile of the income distribution are less likely to work than girls. Second, these gender gaps vary substantially across counties and commuting zones in which children grow up. The degree of variation in outcomes across places is largest for boys growing up in poor, single-parent families. Third, the spatial variation in gender gaps is highly correlated with proxies for neighborhood disadvantage. Low-income boys who grow up in high-poverty, high-minority areas work significantly less than girls. These areas also have higher rates of crime, suggesting that boys growing up in concentrated poverty substitute from formal employment to crime. Together, these findings demonstrate that gender gaps in adulthood have roots in childhood, perhaps because childhood disadvantage is especially harmful for boys.
Banks Adjust Slowly: Evidence and Lessons for Modeling, w/ Juliane Begenau, Saki Bigio, and Matias Vieyra
Paper and Slides
- This paper presents five facts on the behavior of U.S. banks between 2007 and 2015 that impose useful restrictions on the formulation of a bank problem. (1) Market to book leverage ratio diverged significantly during the crisis. (2) Book values appear to be backward looking. There is more information content about future bank profitability and loan losses in market values than in book values. (3) Neither market nor regulatory constraints are strictly binding for most banks. (4) Banks operate with a target market leverage ratio. (5) The adjustment behavior back to the target changed fundamentally after the crisis. We present a heterogeneous-bank model that rationalizes these facts and can serve as a building block for future work.