Asset Building

Many noncustodial parents do not pay their full child support obligations and therefore accumulate child support debt. At the same time, many children receiving child support assistance have little or no savings to help pay for their higher education. In an effort to increase child support payments, lower child support debt, and expand the future economic opportunities...


Interim Findings from the Work Rewards Demonstration in New York City

June, 2015
Stephen Nuñez, Nandita Verma, Edith Yang

This report presents four-year findings from a test of three interventions: the Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program, FSS plus cash work incentives, and cash work incentives alone. FSS+incentives improved employment and earnings among participants who were not working at study entry, but none of the interventions had impacts for participants overall.


Early Lessons from Family Rewards 2.0

October, 2014

This project builds on NYC’s earlier experiment with a conditional cash transfer program to reduce poverty and improve education, health, and employment outcomes. It tests a revised model in the Bronx and Memphis, adding family guidance to modified incentives paid more frequently. Early implementation findings suggest deeper family engagement.


A New Antipoverty Strategy for Single Adults

May, 2014
Rachel Pardoe, Dan Bloom

This 12-page brief describes a pathbreaking demonstration project testing an enhanced Earned Income Tax Credit for low-income single adults without dependent children in New York City. Paycheck Plus aims to improve participants’ economic well-being while promoting employment and other positive outcomes.


Implementation and Interim Impact Findings from the SaveUSA Evaluation

April, 2014
Gilda Azurdia, Stephen Freedman, Gayle Hamilton, Caroline Schultz

This report describes the early effects of a program helping low- and moderate-income families build up unrestricted-use savings via tax refunds. Individuals who save a pledged amount for a year earn a 50-percent match payment. After 18 months, SaveUSA had increased the percentage of individuals with savings and boosted average savings amounts.

March, 2014
Stephen Nuñez

This paper examines the quality of evidence regarding the effectiveness of efforts to promote access to mainstream credit, banking, and financial services for low-income people and offers recommendations for strengthening the evidence base of such programs.

Many U.S. households do not have enough savings to help manage temporary losses of income or increased expenditures from unexpected events. Increased savings might particularly help low- and moderate-income families avoid resorting to high-cost (sometimes “payday”) loans or failing to meet monthly rent bills and minimum credit card payments. To support the buildup of...