Michelmore and Pilkauskas discuss the benefits of tax credits

October 9, 2023

Over the past few months, Ford School associate professors Katherine Michelmore and Natasha Pilkauskas have been discussing their research and insights on the 2021 Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit in a wide array of outlets. 

Here are highlights from their media appearances:

How the Child Tax Credit Became a Partisan Issue, The New Republic, July 13, 2023

 “Both sides want to support families with children, and it’s a matter of finding some common ground in how we go about doing that,” said Katherine Michelmore, an associate professor of public policy at the University of Michigan.

Michelmore noted that since the lapse of the child tax credit, “​​the current credit leaves out millions of the poorest children in the U.S. who stand to gain the most from the credit.”

How the Child Tax Credit Empowered Low-Income Parents, Nonprofit Quarterly, July 24, 2023

“I think this work is really important because it shows that when you trust families to spend the money on the things that benefit them the most, we do see positive outcomes,” said Michelmore. “It’s hard to say that that’s going to be true for 100 percent of everyone, but at least as a whole, it seems like these are leading to better outcomes for these families.”

Low-wage parents can help their kids avoid poverty for decades if they get this one tax credit, Business Insider, July 26, 2023

Discussing their study, Michelmore explained that the reduction of poverty due to the Earned Income Tax Credit “is a powerful finding because it suggests that investing in children today can have long-term societal benefits in the form of reducing poverty and public assistance use.” 

"Given the broader literature on the EITC, our paper shows that not only does the EITC reduce poverty in the short term, but it can also help break the cycle of poverty by reducing the likelihood of being poor as an adult among children growing up in low-income households,” said Michelmore.

More can be read about Michelmore’s and Pilkauskas’ research here:

The 2021 Child Tax Credit: Who Received It and How Did They Spend It?, American Economic Association, May 2023

The 2021 Child Tax Credit, the Living Arrangements and Housing Affordability of Families with Low Incomes, NBER, June 2023

The Intergenerational Transmission of Poverty and Public Assistance: Evidence from the Earned Income Tax Credit, NBER, July 2023