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Earned Income Tax Credits and Infant Health: A Local EITC Investigation

Brian Hill and Tami Gurley-Calvez

Abstract:

In 1998, Montgomery County, Maryland adopted a local earned income tax credit (EITC) program. We use U.S. Vital Statistics data covering births in Maryland from 1995 to 2004 to examine whether the local EITC impacted birth weight and the probability of low birth weight in Montgomery County. Using difference-in-differences (DD) and triple differences (DDD) strategies, we find that the Montgomery County EITC decreased the probability of low birth weight by 1.9 to 2.4 percentage points among likely eligible mothers. Using the local credit as a unique opportunity to identify EITC effects within a state, these estimates contribute to a growing body of literature that finds improved birth outcomes for credit recipients.

Citation

Brian Hill and Tami Gurley-Calvez (2019), Earned Income Tax Credits and Infant Health: A Local EITC Investigation , National Tax Journal, 72:3, pp. 617-646

DOI: dx.doi.org/10.17310/ntj.2019.3.06