Although the causes of intergenerational transitions from poverty have attracted the attention of economists and sociologists in recent years, there have been few attempts to integrate ideas from both disciplines. Using a sample of young adults who were impoverished as youth, this study explores the effects of a number of background characteristics such as early welfare dependency, substance abuse, teen parenthood and parent's educational attainment on the family income levels of young adults. It finds that many of these background variables have significant indirect influences on family income through intervening variables, especially the respondent's own educational attainment, welfare dependency, and work experiences.



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