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Cash by any other name? Evidence on labeling from the UK Winter Fuel Payment

Beatty, TKM, Blow, LE, Crossley, TF and O'Dea, C (2014) Cash by any other name? Evidence on labeling from the UK Winter Fuel Payment Journal of Public Economics, 118. pp. 86-96.

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Government transfers to individuals are often given labels indicating that they are designed to support the consumption of particular goods. Standard economic theory implies that the labeling of cash transfers or cash-equivalents should have no effect on spending patterns. We study the UK Winter Fuel Payment, a cash transfer to older households. Our empirical strategy nests a regression discontinuity design within an Engel curve framework. We find robust evidence of a behavioral effect of labeling. On average households spend 47% of the WFP on fuel. If the payment were treated as cash, we would expect households to spend 3% of the payment on fuel.

Item Type: Article
Subjects : Economics
Divisions : Surrey research (other units)
Authors :
Beatty, TKM
Crossley, TF
O'Dea, C
Date : October 2014
DOI : 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2014.06.007
Copyright Disclaimer : © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords : Labeling, Benefits, Expenditure, Regression discontinuity
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 16 May 2017 15:38
Last Modified : 24 Jan 2020 15:10

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