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Reducing barriers to opportunity makes the economy stronger for everyone.

Aparna Jayashankar and Xiaohan Zhang

The COVID-19 pandemic severely depressed U.S. labor force participation. Although the pandemic has eased, people ages 20–24 and those over 55 have been less likely to return to the workforce.

Aparna Jayashankar, Xiaohan Zhang and Jason Saving

Research has shown that the Earned Income Tax Credit, the largest of the U.S. antipoverty programs, boosts labor force participation among single mothers. It does not, in the aggregate, have the same effect on married mothers.

Anna Crockett and Xiaohan Zhang

This article sheds light on how several demographic groups have differed in their response to business cycles over time and how their disconnection rates have changed in recent years.

Anna Crockett and Xiaohan Zhang

The sharp rise during the pandemic in young people who are neither in school nor working—often referred to as “opportunity youth”—is the exacerbation of a problem that has gradually worsened in the past two decades.

Emily Ryder Perlmeter

Years before the term “she-cession” became part of our national lexicon, the number of businesses owned by women was growing at a rate more than twice that of all businesses. Despite their increasing importance to the economy, women-owned firms were less likely than firms owned by men to be financially healthy heading into the COVID-19 economic crisis.

Jason Saving and Xiaohan Zhang

Social scientists have found in some instances that safety-net programs sometimes reduce recipients’ incentive to work and thereby provide a headwind to U.S. economic growth.

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Dallas Fed Communities