Making the Business Case for Employee Well-Being

Making the Business Case for Employee Well-Being. Urban Institute. Molly M. Scott, Natalie Spievack. June 13, 2019

Businesses are beginning to move beyond traditional health insurance and retirement plans to improve employee well-being in multiple domains. The programs they offer are typically voluntary and can include financial well-being, paying for educational expenses, and on-site resource navigators who help employees address a wide range of issues. These innovative well-being benefits have the potential to make employees more engaged, less likely to miss work and make mistakes, and more inclined to protect their employers from waste or fraud. Some business case studies show that businesses with happy, healthy, and stable employees can be more profitable than their competitors. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 19 pages].

Delayed Retirement and the Growth in Income Inequality at Older Ages

Delayed Retirement and the Growth in Income Inequality at Older Ages. Urban Institute. Richard W. Johnson. February 1, 2018

 As concerns about retirement savings have intensified, many older adults have begun working beyond traditional retirement age. By working longer, they can improve their retirement security by increasing their future monthly Social Security payments and shortening the time they must rely on their savings. But does delaying retirement deepen income inequality for older adults by leaving those with health problems behind? [Note: contains copyrighted material].

 [PDF format, 35 pages].

Income-based Inequality in Educational Outcomes

Income-based Inequality in Educational Outcomes. National Bureau of Economic Research. John P. Papay et al. Web posted January 30, 2015.

The authors document large income-based gaps in educational attainments, including high-school graduation rates and college-going. They also show that income-related gaps in both educational credentials and academic skill have narrowed substantially over the past several years in Massachusetts. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 44 pages, 1.47 MB].

The Tale of Two Middle Classes

The Tale of Two Middle Classes. YaleGlobal. Branko Milanovic. July 31, 2014.

Thanks to globalization and trade, middle-class incomes have more than doubled in countries like China and Indonesia, but still remain a fraction of those earned by the middle class in Europe or the United States. Meanwhile, in Europe, the United States and Japan, incomes for the middle class have stagnated even as their richest citizens accrue more wealth, profiting by investing in globalization ventures of all types. Growing inequality, polarization in politics, and the political influence of the wealthy suggest wages will continue to stagnate for the middle classes in the most advanced economies. “This calls into question either the sustainability of democracy under such conditions or the sustainability of globalization,” argues economist Branko Milanovic. Investing just a larger portion of the gains in infrastructure, education and other programs that benefit society as a whole could protect political systems, including democracy, as well as the globalization that benefits the world’s poor. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[HTML format, various paging].

Estimating Income / Expenditure Differences across Populations: New Fun with Old Engel’s Law

Estimating Income / Expenditure Differences across Populations: New Fun with Old Engel’s Law. Center for Global Development. Lant Pritchett and Marla Spivak. August 27, 2013.

How much larger are the consumption possibilities of an urban U.S. household with per capita expenditures of 1,000 U.S. dollars per month than a rural Indonesian household with per capita expenditures of 1,000,000 Indonesian Rupiah per month? Consumers in different markets face widely different consumption possibilities and prices and hence the conversion of incomes or expenditures to truly comparable units of purchasing power is extremely difficult. The authors propose a simple supplement to existing purchasing power adjusted currency conversions. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 45 pages, 871.3 KB].

Gender Identity and Relative Income within Households

Gender Identity and Relative Income within Households. National Bureau of Economic Research. Marianne Bertrand et al. May 15, 2013.

The authors analyze U.S. Census data for 1970-2010 and find that a couple is less likely to get married if the woman’s income exceeds the man’s. Once married, the wife is less likely be in the labor force, and if she is working tends to earn less than would be predicted based on education and other attributes if her potential income exceeds her husband’s. They also find that couples where the wife earns more than the husband are less satisfied with their marriages and are more likely to divorce. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 49 pages, 500 KB].