Amalie Sofie Jensen

Department of Economics and CEBI
University of Copenhagen
Oester Farimagsgade 5, Building 35
DK-1353 Copenhagen K

E-Mail: asj@econ.ku.dk
Institutional Affiliation: University of Copenhagen

NBER Working Papers and Publications

November 2019The Welfare Magnet Hypothesis: Evidence From an Immigrant Welfare Scheme in Denmark
with Ole Agersnap, Henrik Kleven: w26454
We study the effects of welfare generosity on international migration using reforms of immigrant welfare benefits in Denmark. The first reform, implemented in 2002, lowered benefits for non-EU immigrants by about 50%, with no changes for natives or EU immigrants. The policy was later repealed and re-introduced. Based on a quasi-experimental research design, we find sizeable effects: the benefit reduction reduced the net flow of immigrants by about 5,000 people per year, and the subsequent repeal of the policy reversed the effect almost exactly. The implied elasticity of migration with respect to benefits equals 1.3. This represents some of the first causal evidence on the welfare magnet hypothesis.
July 2017Do People Respond to the Mortage Interest Deduction? Quasi-Experimental Evidence from Denmark
with Jonathan Gruber, Henrik Kleven: w23600
Using linked housing and tax records from Denmark combined with a major reform of the mortgage interest deduction in the late 1980s, we carry out the first comprehensive long-term study of how tax subsidies affect housing decisions. The reform introduced a large and sharp reduction in the mortgage deduction for top-rate taxpayers, while reducing it much less or not at all for lower-rate taxpayers. We present three main findings. First, the mortgage deduction has a precisely estimated zero effect on homeownership. This holds even in the very long run. Second, the mortgage deduction has a sizeable impact on housing demand at the intensive margin, inducing homeowners to buy larger and more expensive houses. Third, the largest effect of the mortgage deduction is on household financial decision...

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