Seminario Applied

Daniel Tannenbaum

University of Nebraska


Seminario 1 – 14:30


Each year more than two million U.S. households have an eviction case filed against them. Influential work in sociology has hypothesized that eviction is a cause, and not merely a consequence, of poverty. This paper uses the near-universe of eviction court cases in Cook County, IL for 2000-2016, linked to credit bureau and payday loans data, to provide evidence on the link between eviction and financial strain. We first provide new descriptive evidence showing that there is significant distress and an increase in demand for high interest loans in the run-up to eviction court for both evicted and non-evicted tenants. We then estimate the causal effect of an eviction order on financial strain, proxies for durable goods consumption, household moves, and neighborhood quality, leveraging the random assignment of cases to judges in eviction court for identification. The effects are small relative to the financial strain experienced by tenants in the run-up to eviction court.

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