SEARCH: economic policy

Creating Economic Opportunity for More Americans Through Productivity Growth

  The U.S. economy in recent years has been characterized by slow average productivity growth and increasing productivity dispersion within industries. These trends have coincided with analogous changes in wages—slow average wage growth and greater wage inequality between workers. In this essay, I discuss research into the potential causes of these patterns and outline several […]

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 […]

Economic Strategy Group Member Statement, December 2019

Aspen Economic Strategy Group (AESG) Member Statement December 2019 We, the undersigned members of the AESG, have collectively worked at the highest levels of the policy, business, government, academic, and civic communities. We believe that our nation’s economic policies need to be adjusted so that more people participate more fully in our economic success. We […]

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 […]

New York Times: How to Get Americans to Love Capitalism Again

Originally published in New York Times. American capitalism is at a serious inflection point. Many Americans, including the two of us, are alarmed by enormous levels of inequality and by declining economic mobility. We are concerned that in many cases American markets are no longer the most competitive in the world. And, we worry that […]

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, […]

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 […]

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, […]