The Long-Run Effects of Poverty and Food Insecurity
Thursday, November 7, 2019
I.M Pei Tower: Terrace Level, Columbine (Sheraton Denver Downtown)
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
While the poverty and food insecurity rates are two of the most cited statistics for measuring economic hardship in the U.S., surprisingly little is known about the long-term determinants and potential consequences of being in poverty or food insecure. This paper aims to provide new insight into the determinants and potential consequences of poverty and food insecurity by linking the leading source of poverty and food insecurity statistics, the Current Population Survey to administrative data continuing respondents' annual income from 1951-2016 and data on mortality. To examine the long-term impacts of poverty and food insecurity, we first create a sample of Current Population Survey respondents who were in both the Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC, the official source of poverty statistics for the U.S.) and the Food Security Supplement (FSS, the official source of food security statistics for the U.S.). In order to obtain a long-term view of individuals who are observed as impoverished and/or food insecure in the ASEC-FSS sample, we then link respondents in the sample to their administrative data on earnings and mortality from the Social Security Administration. Using the data linkage, we first examine how poverty and food security status of respondents predicts life-expectancy using respondents’ birth and death data from SSA. We then use SSA data on respondents’ earnings over the period from 1951-2016 to examine how poverty and food security status are related to lifetime labor-force attachment and life-cycle earnings.