The Fall 2021 Seminar in Applied Economics will feature Pete Klenow from Stanford University. Klenow will be presenting on “Race and Economic Well-Being in United States”.
Abstract: We construct a measure of consumption-equivalent welfare for Black and White Americans. Our statistic incorporates life expectancy, consumption, leisure, and inequality, with mortality rates playing a key role quantitatively. According to our estimates, welfare for Black Americans was 45% of that for White Americans in 1984 and rose to 64% by 2019. Going back further in time (albeit with more limited data), the gap was even larger, with Black welfare equal to just 28% of White welfare in 1940. On the one hand, there has been remarkable progress for Black Americans: the level of their consumption equivalent welfare increased by a factor of 30 between 1940 and 2019, when aggregate consumption per person rose a more modest 5-fold. On the other hand, despite this remarkable progress, the welfare gap in 2019 remains disconcertingly large. Mortality from COVID-19 has temporarily reversed a decade of progress, lowering Black welfare by 17% while reducing White welfare by 10%.
This is an online event. Please register here to participate via Zoom.
Please note: Students, faculty, staff, alumni, and others who participate in this seminar with their camera on or use a profile image are agreeing to have their video or image recorded solely for the purpose of creating a record for participants in this seminar to refer to, including those enrolled students who are unable to attend live. If you are unwilling to consent to have your profile or video image recorded, be sure to keep your camera off and do not use a profile image. Likewise, participants who un-mute during the seminar or class and participate orally are agreeing to have their voices recorded. If you are not willing to consent to have your voice recorded, you will need to keep your mute button activated and communicate exclusively using the "chat" feature, which allows participants to type questions and comments live.