Economic Policy

Economic policies are the end results of economic planning: the decisions governments make to influence the production, consumption, and sharing of wealth. RAND research has explored economic policies from the local to the international level, including their effects on international trade and foreign relations, their relation to policies focusing on public health and the environment, and their impact on economic growth and recessions.

  • Stethoscope on an American flag

    Q&A

    Estimating the Impacts of the Trump and Clinton Health Plans

    An analysis of the proposed health care plans of the two major parties' presidential candidates estimated the likely effects of each policy relative to the ACA in 2018 on the number of people covered, consumer out-of-pocket spending, and the federal deficit.

    Sep 23, 2016

  • News Release

    Cutting U.S. Overseas Security Commitments Could Cost U.S. World Trade Billions

    Reducing U.S. overseas security commitments, including troops and security treaties, could lead to greatly reduced trade, with the economic costs estimated to be more than triple any associated savings in U.S. defense spending.

    Sep 22, 2016

  • A formation of C-130 Hercules cargo aircraft fly in formation as they return from the Samurai Surge training mission near Mount Fuji, Japan, June 5, 2012

    Report

    The Value of Overseas Security Commitments

    U.S. overseas security commitments have positive and significant effects on both U.S. bilateral trade and non-U.S. global bilateral trade. If commitments were reduced, the economic costs from lost trade would be more than triple any associated savings in defense spending.

    Sep 22, 2016

  • Research Brief

    Economic Benefits of U.S. Overseas Security Commitments Could Far Outweigh Costs

    Amid intensifying debate over U.S. funding and resources, RAND researchers find that the economic benefits of U.S. overseas security commitments could far exceed the costs.

    Sep 22, 2016

  • Tool

    Estimating the Value of Overseas Security Commitments: An Interactive Visualization

    Researchers estimated that U.S. economic losses from major retrenchments of overseas security commitments would be more than triple any gains. This visualization compares different estimated gains and losses from selected retrenchment levels and selected tax, spending, and trade multipliers.

    Sep 22, 2016

  • Federal Reserve Building in Washington, D.C.

    Commentary

    Central Bank Perversity: The Downside to Aggressive Monetary Policy

    Aggressive monetary policy has negative effects on retirees, on income inequality, and on market stability—both domestically and globally.

    Sep 13, 2016

  • A dishwasher working in a restaurant kitchen

    Commentary

    College Education No Panacea for Worker Inequality Woes

    The earnings gap between high school and college graduates has grown with each generation, but even a college degree does not ensure a good income. Just as the nature of jobs for high school graduates has been changing due to consolidation, trade, and technology, the quality of employment for college graduates is beginning to shift.

    Aug 31, 2016

  • A ship is unloaded using Super Post Panamax cranes in Miami, Florida, May 19, 2016

    Commentary

    Eliminating Jobs or Strengthening the Economy? The Impact of Trade Policies on the American Worker

    The enormous benefits of trade include economic growth, more variety for industry and consumers, and lower prices. But trade can displace some American workers. Training programs, relocation assistance, and wage insurance can help.

    Aug 30, 2016

  • Demonstrators march in the Occupy LA protest through downtown Los Angeles to City Hall on October 15, 2011

    Commentary

    Fixing Inequality of Opportunity

    Research has fueled concerns about how income inequality drives inequality of opportunity. Commonsense approaches such as improvements in education and access to quality health care have been shown to provide young people with better opportunities.

    Jul 6, 2016

  • A drilling rig at the Imilorskoye oil field, outside the West Siberian city of Kogalym, Russia, January 25, 2016

    Report

    Prospects for Russia's Economic Growth

    Without major policy changes, the Russian economy will grow slowly in the medium term, even if world market prices for oil rebound sharply. However, returning to policies that Russia has pursued in the recent past could lead to substantially higher rates of growth.

    Jun 22, 2016

  • 20160621-RAND-USTR

    Multimedia

    U.S. International Economic Policies That Can Expand Strategic Options

    In a fast-changing world, should the United States strengthen its links with the international economy or pull back? RAND Senior Economist Howard Shatz and Ambassador Michael Froman explore this question at the book launch for the latest volume in RAND's Strategic Rethink series. Ambassador Charles Ries moderates the discussion.

    Jun 21, 2016

  • Commercial Book

    Rethinking Risk in National Security: Lessons of the Financial Crisis for Risk Management

    This book examines the role of risk management in the recent financial crisis and applies lessons learned to the national security realm.

    Jun 1, 2016

  • Six stick figures standing on steps

    Report

    How Does Income Inequality Impact Opportunity?

    Rising income inequality can affect outcomes for children of parents with lower incomes by limiting their opportunities. Understanding the extent to which inequalities in opportunity and outcomes are related can help determine which policies have the most potential to level the playing field.

    May 23, 2016

  • Israel's flag on a ribbon

    Report

    Developing Long-Term Socioeconomic Strategy in Israel

    Israel faces economic and social challenges. The government has not developed and implemented strategic responses to socioeconomic problems that demand longer-term policy action. How can it form and implement a socioeconomic strategy and take a long-term view of these issues?

    Apr 25, 2016

  • A satellite orbiting Earth

    Commentary

    The Democratization of Space

    A new economic model for outer space must account for lower barriers to entry and the involvement of more and more stakeholders, such as developing countries and start-ups.

    Mar 28, 2016

  • Construction cranes in the city of Erbil in Kurdistan - Iraq

    Report

    Calculating the Gross Regional Product of the Kurdistan Region — Iraq

    Estimates the gross regional product (GRP) of the Kurdistan Region -- Iraq in 2012 (excluding natural resources) and describes efforts to set up a system for data collection and analysis to support future annual GRP calculation.

    Mar 22, 2016

  • Crossing into Romania from Bulgaria on the Danube Bridge

    Commentary

    Why the EU Single Market Is Still an Incomplete Jigsaw

    The Single Market has contributed to economic growth and consumer welfare within the European Union. However, its true potential remains unfulfilled, with gaps in several key areas.

    Feb 16, 2016

  • Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange after an announcement by the Federal Reserve, October 28, 2015

    Commentary

    Zero Interest, Greater Inequality?

    Low interest rates mandated by the Federal Reserve may have had and possibly continue to have adverse effects on income inequality. Those who argue for continuing near-zero short-term interest rate policy should be cognizant of this.

    Nov 2, 2015

  • Colleagues discussing ideas

    Commentary

    Do Young 'Elites' Favor Income Redistribution?

    Young “elites” — employed Americans who are 40 or younger, with high household incomes and graduate degrees — and especially Democratic elites have a strong preference for income redistribution.

    Oct 8, 2015

  • Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (C) at the first meeting of the new cabinet in the parliament building in Athens, Greece September 25, 2015

    Commentary

    The Greek Tragedy's Next Act Unfolds

    On regaining the mantle of prime minister, Tsipras should expect little, if any, honeymoon from the Greek electorate, as he faces not just the implementation of austerity measures demanded by the International Monetary Fund and the EU: He must also cope with Greece's part of a European migration crisis of historic proportions.

    Sep 27, 2015