Jeanna Kenney

Jeanna Kenney
  • PhD Candidate in Applied Economics

Contact Information

  • office Address:

    3733 Spruce Street, 300 Vance Hall, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6302

Research Interests: real estate, labor economics, public economics

Links: CV, Personal Website


Graduate Studies:

  • Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 2018 to present
    Expected Completion Date: May 2024

Undergraduate Studies:

  • Haverford College; B.A., Economics with a Concentration in Mathematical Economics; Magna Cum Laude with High Honors, 2016
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“Appraising Home Purchase Appraisals” (with Paul Calem, Lauren Lambie-Hanson, and Leonard Nakamura), Real Estate Economics, March 2021, vol. 94, issue S1, pp. 134-168. LINK


Working Papers/Works in Progress:

“Market Concentration, Labor Quality, and Efficiency: Evidence from Barriers in the Real Estate Industry” (Job Market Paper)

Draft Available Upon Request

Abstract: This paper estimates the trade-off between quality and concentration due to occupational licensing and the consequences of entry restriction for market efficiency in the real estate industry. I exploit a policy reform in Texas in 2012 which provides quasi-exogenous variation in the cost of entry that real estate salespeople face in order to become brokers. A future increase in licensing cost should lead to an anticipatory spike in entry before a supply restriction, which has different implications in the short vs. long term. Using a novel dataset of the universe of licensees in a number of states matched with property listing data, I compare counties in Texas with similar counties in other states in a synthetic difference-in-difference estimation. The reform generates an unintended short-term increase in entry, leading to a 12% increase in the stock of brokers in the average county, before broker supply is restricted in the long term. The increased barrier does not increase broker quality, while market concentration persistently decreases by more than 25%, due to the unintended entry effect, suggesting minimal benefits to consumers of restricting entry. However, efficiency, i.e., average broker listing volume, decreases due to entry. This simple definition does not capture distributional effects of barriers: I find that costlier licensing leads to a smaller share of entering female and Hispanic brokers.


“Household Mobility, Networks, and Gentrification of Minority Neighborhoods in the US” with Fernando Ferreira and Benjamin Smith; Conditionally accepted at Journal of Labor Economics; LINK

Abstract: We investigate the impact of recent gentrification shocks on minority neighborhoods in the 50 largest U.S. labor markets. We show that household moves from a given neighborhood are concentrated to few destinations with similar minority shares and strong network ties, but those neighborhoods are farther away from downtown. Gentrification affects Black neighborhoods by raising house prices, reducing the proportion of Black households, and increasing the share of movers going to neighborhoods with network ties. However, gentrification has negligible effects on Hispanic neighborhoods. Overall labor market area segregation decreases after a gentrification shock because highly Black neighborhoods become less segregated.


“Agents and the Gender Gap in Negotiations” with Tomer Mangoubi

Draft Available Upon Request

Abstract: Gender gaps in negotiation strategies and outcomes are widely documented. In many negotiation settings, an agent (e.g. a talent agent, real estate agent, lawyer, etc.) negotiates on behalf of a principal. However, the effect of agents on negotiation gender gaps remains unexplored. In our experiment, where participants play a take-it-or-leave-it offer negotiation game, we find that there is a gender gap in negotiation strategies absent agents. Introducing agents who negotiate on behalf of their clients entirely closes this gender gap. Evidence suggests that agents close the gap because they believe there to be no gender-gap in negotiation-relevant quantities such as reservation prices among the clients they represent.


“Do Collective Bargaining Laws Change the Financing of Public Sector Pension Plans”

Draft Available Upon Request

Abstract: Despite the growing public employee pension obligations nationwide, there is little empirical knowledge about the role of labor union bargaining power as a determinant of pension financing. This paper tests if the passage of state-level laws legalizing collective bargaining for public employees affects employer and employee contributions and benefit payments. The empirical work uses a newly updated database of collective bargaining laws for various public sector employee groups in each state and applies a triple difference design based on variation by state, time, and union occupation. Using the universe of pension plans from 1987 onward, I find that collective bargaining laws fail to have a significant impact on plan revenues and expenditures. Event study evidence also shows that the financing of public pension plans for employees who eventually get collective bargaining rights progresses similarly to plans for employees who do not.


“COVID Spillovers and Implications for Federal Policy” with Robert Inman

Abstract and Draft Available Upon Request


“Gender Differences in Strategic Incompetence” with Ashley Litwin

  • Benjamin Smith, Fernando Ferreira, Jeanna Kenney (Working), Household Mobility, Networks, and Gentrification of Minority Neighborhoods in the US.

    Abstract: We study how recent gentrification shocks impact Black and Hispanic neighborhoods, including where minority households move to after a shock and if the subsequent spatial distribution of households within a labor market area affects segregation. We first report that household moves from a given neighborhood are concentrated to a few destinations. For minority neighborhoods, destinations tend to have similar minority shares but are farther away from downtown. Those mobility patterns are partially explained by neighborhood networks. We then use Bartik-style labor market income shocks to show that gentrification has many effects. In Black neighborhoods, gentrification increases house prices and reduces the share of Black households while increasing the share of White households. For movers from Black neighborhoods, gentrification increases the share of movers going to top 1 and 2 destinations based on neighborhood networks and increases the share of households moving out of the MSA, but does not change the pattern of households moving to neighborhoods with similar Black shares that are farther away from downtown areas. Hispanic neighborhoods have negligible effects from gentrification. Finally, our model reveals that overall labor market area segregation decreases after a gentrification shock because highly Black neighborhoods become less segregated.


All Courses

  • BEPP2500 - Managerial Economics

    This course will introduce you to "managerial economics" which is the application of microeconomic theory to managerial decision-making. Microeconomic theory is a remarkably useful body of ideas for understanding and analyzing the behavior of individuals and firms in a variety of economic settings. The goal of the course is for you to understand this body of theory well enough so that you can effectively analyze managerial (and other) problems in an economic framework. While this is a "tools" course, we will cover many real-world applications, particularly business applications, so that you can witness the usefulness of these tools and acquire the skills to use them yourself. We will depart from the usual microeconomic theory course by giving more emphasis to prescription: What should a manager do in order to achieve some objective? That course deliverable is to compare with description: Why do firms and consumers act the way they do? The latter will still be quite prominent in this course because only by understanding how other firms and customers behave can a manager determine what is beswt for him or her to do. Strategic interaction is explored both in product markets and auctions. Finally, the challenges created by asymmetric information - both in the market and within the firm - are investigated.