R Sheet on Economic Mobility


C. Jarrett Dieterle
Resident Senior Fellow, Competition Policy
Aubrey Neal
Former Manager, Federal Government Affairs

Key Points

Economic mobility is most commonly defined as an individual’s ability to either earn above or fall below their current income bracket.

Policy ideas to increase economic mobility range from direct financial aid to regulatory reform. Federal and state legislatures are searching for politically feasible solutions that do not increase the nation’s financial burden.

Commercial licensing reform is a responsible solution that aims to increase economic opportunity by decreasing regulatory, licensing and other barriers to employment without cost to the taxpayer.

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Economic mobility is defined as “the ability of someone to change their income or wealth.” It is an everevolving challenge facing both rural and urban communities. Regardless of unemployment rates and workforce participation, economic opportunities are shifting more rapidly than in previous generations, leaving many segments of the population either unqualified for employment or barred from hiring consideration due to inaccessibility. Educational, financial and deregulatory approaches have been used to address these issues. Lawmakers at the local, state and federal levels are crafting policies to aid impoverished, under-served or unemployed communities and increase economic potential.

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