SEARCH: Economic Strategy Group

Scaling Apprenticeship to Increase Human Capital

  The 2016 election heightened an ongoing debate in the United States about how best to respond to two of the foremost economic challenges of the current era: stagnant wages and a dearth of promising career prospects for American workers without a bachelor’s degree. These challenges persist despite a dramatic increase in recent decades in […]

A Policymaker’s Guide to Labor Force Participation

  Labor force participation among prime-age workers has been declining for many decades. This memo aims to provide policy makers with a useful framework for thinking about the question: “Why are so many people deciding that seeking work isn’t worth it?” After reviewing relevant facts and trends about labor force participation in the United States, […]

The Economics of Medicare for All

Overview: Policymakers and political candidates are expressing renewed interest in expanding the role of government in increasing access to and affordability of health care for all Americans. The most prominent proposal, Medicare For All, is supported in some form and under varying definitions by the majority of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, and would create a […]

Bringing Jobs to People: Improving Local Economic Development Policies

SUMMARY Even before the current recession, local labor markets across the U.S. had large and persistent disparities in employment among prime-working age adults. Roughly 15 percent of the U.S. population, totaling 47 million people, lived in areas with employment rates at least 5 percentage points below the national average. In this Economic Strategy Group memo, […]

The Need to Expand Economic Opportunity

  The pursuit of economic opportunity for all Americans is as important to the health of the country’s economy as it is to the strength of its democracy. The promise that hard work and determination will yield economic success is a central American ideal, but it has been called into question as secular economic forces […]

Maintaining The Strength of American Capitalism

The American economic system has always been the foundation of our national strength. But this foundation is showing cracks—from high levels of income inequality, declining economic mobility, and persistent economic insecurity among low- and middle-income Americans.

Policy Options for Taxing the Rich

Overview: Batchelder and Kamin argue the United States must raise new revenue in order to reduce high levels of economic disparity, finance much-needed new services and investments, and address the nation’s long-term fiscal needs They present a range of options that would raise tax revenue and increase the progressivity of the federal tax system. Policymakers […]

Economic Strategy for Higher Wages and Expanded Labor Participation

  We propose two alternative policy options for promoting increased earnings and employment of low-income households: expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) among childless workers, and implementing a wage subsidy for low-income workers that would be administered through employers. The EITC is based on household income and administered as a tax credit, while the […]

The Higher Wages Tax Credit

  In the face of continued low employment, stagnant wages, persistent poverty, and rising inequality, minimum wage increases will likely continue to hold appeal as a policy response. In this paper, I propose a Higher Wages Tax Credit (HWTC) to partially offset the costs imposed by minimum wage increases on firms that employ low-skilled labor. […]

Fiscal Policy With High Debt and Low Interest Rates

Overview: The U.S. budget trajectory is in uncharted territory. The country faces a structural deficit, accrued the largest increase in debt on record during the current economic recovery, and is expected to surpass its WWII-era debt-to-GDP record of 106 percent within the next 30 years. Gale argues that although historically low interest rates reduce the […]