SEARCH: Economic Strategy Group

Policies to Reintegrate Former Inmates Into the Labor Force

  Incarceration rates in the United States have more than tripled in recent decades as rehabilitation has gradually taken a back seat to a policy agenda emphasizing punishment and incapacitation. This raises important questions about the effectiveness of state and federal prisons in the United States, and about whether the resources required for long prison […]

Wealth Taxation: An Overview of the Issues

Overview: Recent wealth tax proposals put forward by Democratic presidential candidates Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Bernie Sanders would impose an annual tax on the net worth of the wealthiest Americans. The proposed wealth tax rates are in the range of 2 to 8 percent per year. Although those tax rates might appear low, they […]

How Minimum Zoning Mandates Can Improve Housing Markets and Expand Opportunity

  Dramatic differences in income, productivity, and housing costs within the United States make geographic mobility important for spreading prosperity. But Americans’ ability to move to places like San Francisco, Boston, and New York in search of economic opportunities is limited by severe restrictions on new housing supply in these productive places. State-level Minimum Zoning […]

A Policy Agenda to Develop Human Capital for the Modern Economy

  Globalization and technological innovation have intensified the demand for college- educated workers. In 2017, college graduates earned 65% more than non-college- educated workers and were twice as likely to be employed. This proposal recognizes the simultaneous need for more college educated workers and also for a higher level of labor market skill among non-college […]

Concerns About Concentration

Overview: A number of studies in recent years have fueled policymakers’ concerns over rising market concentration and the state of competition in US industry. However, determining the relationship between market concentration and other key economic outcomes­—such as markups, profit rates, labor share, and the state of competition more broadly—is fraught with empirical challenges. The state […]

Economic Strategy Group Statement on COVID-19 Pandemic and Economic Crisis

The COVID-19 pandemic is at once threatening American lives, the sustainability of our nation’s health care system, and our economic prosperity. Our paramount concern at this moment should be to slow the spread of this virus and equip our health care system to effectively respond. Saving lives and saving the economy are not in conflict right now; […]

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, […]