Re-Examining the SNAP Benefit Cycle Allowing for Heterogeneity

Re-Examining the SNAP Benefit Cycle Allowing for Heterogeneity Abstract A well-known feature of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is that some recipients spend a disproportionate amount of their monthly benefit early in the month. Using a finite mixture model that optimally separates households into two groups, coupled with the National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey, we re-examine this spending pattern. Results show that a minority of SNAP recipients cause the benefit cycle by spending, on average, two-thirds of their monthly benefit within the first four days. A potential implication of these findings is that more frequent SNAP benefit disbursal or educational programs designed to encourage smoother spending over the month might be of benefit to some SNAP households. SNAP, SNAP benefit cycle, food insecurity, mixture model Both anecdotal evidence and social science research have documented what is known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefit cycle, in which SNAP recipients spend much of their monthly benefit very early in the month. Such behavior is of concern to policy makers because SNAP is the government’s main and largest food assistance program (previously and still often known as food stamps), and if recipients spend their benefit early in the month they may experience nutritional deficiencies or food insecurity later in the benefit month. Previous studies have established that, on a purely descriptive level, about 20% of SNAP recipients experience very low food security (Coleman-Jensen et al. 2016). It seems a reasonable hypothesis that if SNAP recipients spend most of their SNAP benefit early in their benefit month, they have a higher probability of being food insecure late in the benefit month when they may lack the financial resources to purchase sufficient food. Past research has shown convincingly that SNAP participation improves the well-being of recipients over numerous dimensions, including reductions in food insecurity (Nord and Golla 2009; Gregory, Rabbitt, and Ribar 2015; Gundersen and Ziliak 2015), improvements in health outcomes such as anemia (Kreider et al. 2012) and birth outcomes (Almond, Hoynes, and Schanzenbach 2011), and increases in the quality of participants’ diets and nutrition (Gregory et al. 2013; Gundersen 2015). Recognizing the benefit of the SNAP program, understanding the nature and causes of the benefit cycle is important because policies that smooth out the SNAP cycle could further improve both the effectiveness and cost efficiency of the program. This paper is motivated by the fact that while the existence of the SNAP benefit cycle is well established, there is considerably less research that has examined SNAP spending behavior across the benefit month at the micro level. Until recently, this has been due to lack of data. However, from 2012 to 2013 the U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted the first nationally representative survey on household food purchases and acquisition. The National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey (FoodAPS) oversampled low-income households and asked about both food-at-home (FAH) and food-away-from-home (FAFH) purchase information, inquired about any sources for acquiring free food, and collected demographic and income information including SNAP participation and the amount of any SNAP benefit. The survey also recorded how each purchase was paid for and collected information on households’ SNAP receipt date. These data provide the best opportunity to date for examining the SNAP benefit cycle at the household level (a fuller description of this data is below). In this paper, we re-examine the SNAP benefit cycle using a finite mixture model that allows different groups of SNAP recipients to display distinct patterns of spending across the benefit month. In estimating a finite mixture model, the number of groups is chosen by model selection criteria, and which group each household belongs to is chosen to maximize the likelihood function. Using the empirical estimates, we attempt to identify whether the benefit cycle is caused by the behavior of a sub-group of SNAP recipients and then to identify behaviors correlated with that suboptimal spending. Ideally, successful identification of such behaviors would allow the design of program improvements that could help SNAP better address nutritional outcomes and food insecurity. We find clear classification of our sample into two groups—designated as patient and impatient groups—that display wildly different spending patterns for their monthly SNAP benefits. The smaller group of impatient households spends two-thirds of their monthly benefit in the first four days, while patient households only spend one-sixth. That the SNAP benefit cycle is confined to a subset of households has implications for designing policy to address the issue. The rest of the paper is organized as follows. A literature review provides context for the model that is developed in the following section, along with a description of the estimation methodology. The data are described next. This is followed by our empirical results. Finally, implications and conclusions complete the paper. Conceptual Background The life-cycle or permanent income hypothesis is a mainstay of textbook economic theory. According to this model, households’ expectations of lifetime (permanent) income shape their purchasing and decision-making activity in the present more than their current actual income (Friedman 1957; Hall 1978). If markets for credit, information, and insurance are complete, households can always borrow against future income in order to execute optimal consumption decisions today. A testable prediction that has developed from the empirical literature in this domain is that predictable changes in income—for example, the specific timing of regular paychecks, stipends, or program benefit payments—should have no effect on consumption. Put another way, consumption decisions in the current period will not be related to current income or its timing; choices about consumption in the short- and long-term are perfectly time-consistent. Behavioral departures from the life-cycle or permanent income hypothesis’ rational calculus of utility could be due to market imperfections or other economic causes. In the case of the SNAP benefit cycle, some research has focused on preference heterogeneity—that is, difference in time preferences between SNAP and non-SNAP households.1 In this context, the behavior of SNAP participants has been found to be consistent with hyperbolic discounting, which describes the situation in which people discount utility in the near future much more heavily than in the not-so-distant future (Laibson, 1997; Smith et al. 2016; Wilde and Ranney 2000). Empirical research has suggested that this could lead to reductions in food purchases and nutritional quality at the end of the benefit month. For example, Shapiro (2005) showed that the SNAP cycle led to decreased caloric intake as well as declining dollar value of intake across the benefit month. Differences in the estimates of these decreases implied a shift away from higher- to lower- quality foods over the course of the month. Wilde and Ranney (2000) examined average calorie intake and found decreased intakes in the fourth week of the SNAP distribution month. Todd (2015) found that, before the increase in SNAP benefits associated with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, caloric intake declined by as much as 25% in the fourth week of the SNAP month. Tarasuk, Mclntyre, and Li (2007) showed that low-income women’s dietary quality was sensitive to the time since the receipt of income. Finally, Kharmats et al. (2014) found that nutrient quality and energy declined for each day removed from SNAP receipt in a sample of low-income African-Americans in Baltimore. Other research has shown that this lack of smoothing behavior may be linked to food insecurity. For example, Hamrick and Andrews (2016) used the American Time Use Survey to show that SNAP recipients were more likely to have a day without eating at the end of the SNAP benefit month. Weinstein et al. (2009) found that low-income households were 5.5 times as likely to report food insecurity at the end of the benefit month as at the beginning; additionally, they found that in households with children, food-insecure households were much more likely to have a child with anemia. Our study contributes to this literature by examining unobserved heterogeneity in responses to SNAP receipt and using administrative data to check the robustness of the results. This allows us to test the hypothesis that the SNAP benefit cycle is caused by a subgroup of SNAP recipients, and to then test for observables correlated with group membership. Methodology In order to test our theory that the SNAP benefit cycle might be caused by only a subset of SNAP recipients, we apply a normal finite mixture model to data on spending patterns from the FoodAPS dataset. A mixture model assumes that data are generated by two or more different unobserved processes with each observation being assigned a probability of belonging to each process or group (Dempster, Laird, and Rubin 1977). The model specification of the data-generating process in each group can be different, or even if the model stays constant across groups, the model parameters will differ. During the estimation process, the parameters of each group’s model are chosen to maximize the likelihood function, and the number of groups is chosen to optimize a model selection criteria such as the Akaike Information Criterion or AIC. For this application, we apply a normal finite mixture model, meaning that each group is assumed to follow a normal linear regression model. Our chosen dependent variable is the percentage of each household’s monthly SNAP benefit spent in the first four days of the benefit month. This variable is selected because it represents a strong signal of the SNAP benefit cycle. Recipients who spend their SNAP benefit evenly throughout the entire month would spend about 13% in the first four days. In extreme cases of the type of behavior that produces the benefit cycle, some households are observed spending their entire SNAP benefit in the first four days. By focusing on this measure of very rapid spending, we narrow our examination to the behavior that is most indicative of the spending pattern we are seeking to identify and modify. In these first few days, the spending rates of the two groups are the most different, making classification into groups the most accurate. The later in the benefit month we go, the more similar the spending rates become as the impatient households have little left to spend, while the patient group steadily spends small amounts all month. Thus, we focus on the first few days of the benefit month because that is where the informative behavior is displayed that allows us to accurately classify people into the two groups. To explain the share of SNAP benefits spent in the first four days of the month, we include a host of factors in different categories: demographic variables, financial management measures, health-related self-ratings, and store-choice/location. These explanatory variables are identical in all group’s models. Insight can be gained from the differences in the model parameters or in the distribution of exogenous variable values in different groups. We include the amount of monthly SNAP benefits, indicators for three levels of food security, and an indicator of whether the household has utilized a food pantry in the past month.2 The demographic variables include standard variables such as age, gender, race, household size, employment status, and the number of children and elderly in the household. Health measures include variables for tobacco use, self-assessed health status, self-assessed diet quality, and how frequently the shopper looks at nutritional labels. In the shopping category, we have variables for travel time to the shopper’s favored store location, reasons for choosing their usual grocery outlet, and the frequency of grocery list usage.3 The financial measures include whether the household owns their house or apartment, how regularly they pay their bills on time, a self-assessed measure of the household’s financial condition, and an indicator for the presence of more or less than $2,000 in liquid assets. Given this set of explanatory variables, the share of SNAP benefits expended in the first four days of the benefit cycle (Ratio) is represented as a linear model, Ratioi= βoj+ DGiβ1j+ FSiβ2j+ Hiβ3j+ FNiβ4j+ SHiβ5j+ ɛi (1) where DG is a vector of demographic variables, FS are the food security measures, H is a vector of health-related variables, FN is a vector of financial measures, and SH is a vector of variables about shopping location choices and shopping behavior. The βs are parameters to be estimated, with the first subscript denoting the subset of variables they are associated with, and the second subscript denoting the group the observation belongs to (j = 1, …, J), while ɛi is a stochastic term for observation i. Ratio, the share of SNAP benefits spent in the first four days, cannot be negative and is top-censored at 1. Some households do spend more than their monthly SNAP benefit because benefits do rollover if not spent, so it is possible to spend more than 100% in a month or in the first four days. While spending ratios above 1 are therefore possible, we felt that top-censored was preferred. Although the dependent variable, Ratio, is censored on both ends of its range, we are estimating standard linear regression models. There are 45 observations at the lower limit, and 10 observations at the upper limit from a total of 163. While the model results do produce 32 predicted values above 1 and 17 below zero, it is important to note that values greater than one are theoretically possible, and the vast majority of the predicted values outside the imposed range are quite nearby (e.g., 13 out of 17 negative predictions are between 0 and -0.1). Given this, we believe it is defensible to apply linear regression models to this data in spite of its censoring. The likelihood function for a finite mixture model of normal distributions is given by L(π, β, σ | X, y)=∏j=1J∏i=1nπij φRatioi-Xiβjσ (2) where the πij are the probabilities that observation i belongs to group j, φ(•) is the pdf of a standard normal distribution, X is the collection of all the explanatory variables, and βj is the vector of all regression coefficients for group j. To estimate the mixture model for a given number of groups, one maximizes the likelihood function in equation (2) subject to constraints on the πij to ensure they sum to one for each observation. We use the Expectation Maximization (EM) algorithm to achieve this (Dempster, Laird, and Rubin 1977; Frühwirth-Schnatter 2006). The EM algorithm works in two steps: in the first, E-step, with a set of estimates for πij in hand, one takes the conditional expectation of the log likelihood L (y, π | X, β, σ). Then, given the estimates of βj and σ from the E-step, find a new set of πij that maximizes the complete likelihood function in equation (2) conditional on these updated regression parameters (M-step). This loop repeats until convergence to a maximum is achieved. Finally, mixture models are estimated for several different numbers of groups and a model selection criterion such as the AIC is employed to choose the optimal number of groups. To measure the success at classifying the observations into the two groups, we compute the entropy measure of discrimination suggested by Celeux and Soromenho (1996). Discrimination measures how confidently the model has assigned observations to one of the groups. The entropy measure is computed in two steps, E= ∑i=1n∑j=1Jπijln⁡(πij) (3) and ER= 1 –E/[nln(J)]. (4) With the scaling in equation (4), the value of ER is bounded between 0 and 1. If ER = 0 it means the estimated probabilities of belonging to each model are all 1/J (complete uncertainty); when ER = 1, all observations can be placed in a group with complete certainty (probability = 1 for that group, 0 for all others). Common practice is that values above 0.8 demonstrate strong confidence in the classification process. Data The USDA’s National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey (FoodAPS) is the first nationally representative survey to collect comprehensive data about household food purchases and acquisition.4 The seven-day survey was conducted between April 2012 and January 2013 on a nationally-representative sample of 4,826 households. This survey covers SNAP households, low-income households not participating in SNAP, and higher-income households. SNAP households were oversampled to ensure good statistical variation and coverage of this subsample. Sampling weights are included to transform the data set into a nationally representative sample. For a one week data collection period, each participating household was asked to record food-at-home (FAH) and food-away-from-home (FAFH) purchase information, and also reported all sources of free food. Respondents also participated in two interviews that aimed to collect detailed household-level and individual-level information. This detailed information includes variables about shopping outlet choice and the reasons for those choices, self-assessed health measures, measures of both household financial condition and financial management, and many other variables on both food acquisition habits and household demographics. FoodAPS has several advantages for this project. First, FoodAPS collected extensive information on demographic characteristics, labor market activity, program participation, income, and expenditures—both food and non-food—for each household. This is helpful in determining if characteristics differ across the groups estimated by the mixture model. Additionally, each individual’s shopping events are also characterized by the payment type. In particular, we know whether acquisitions are paid for with SNAP benefits, cash, or a combination. Finally, the dataset also lists whether respondents are SNAP recipients and contains an administrative verification of that status (which is important as SNAP status is frequently misreported). We focus on a subsample: the 1,581 of the 4,826 total households that were administratively verified SNAP recipients during the week of the survey. The initial interview was usually conducted right before the seven-day survey period to screen the eligible households. Using information in the FoodAPS data set, we created a variable “dayinterval” to record the number of days between the first day of the seven-day survey period and the last SNAP benefits date. Because each household receives SNAP benefits on the same calendar day as the previous month, dayinterval equals 0 on the day that SNAP benefits are received and reaches a maximum of 30 before the benefit cycle repeats. We are interested in the pattern of how households redeem their SNAP benefits throughout the month. Thus, we calculate the daily SNAP expenditure ratio (“daily ratio” for short) as the percentage of daily SNAP expenditure over monthly SNAP benefits, letting the daily ratio equal 0 if there is no shopping event on a survey day. Figure 1 presents the average daily ratio of SNAP expenditure for all SNAP recipients in the dataset throughout the SNAP benefit month. The average daily ratio is 30.27% on the day of benefit receipt (i.e., dayinterval = 0), which means that the average household spends about 30% of its SNAP benefits on the SNAP receipt day. The average daily ratio drops to 5.87% on the third day. Throughout the rest of the benefit month, the daily ratio displays a consistent decrease. Figure 1 View largeDownload slide Average ratio of SNAP expenditures to SNAP benefit by day of benefit cycle Figure 1 View largeDownload slide Average ratio of SNAP expenditures to SNAP benefit by day of benefit cycle As demonstrated by figure 1, a well-known and oft-studied feature of SNAP recipients is that, on average, SNAP participants spend a large percentage of their benefits within the first few days of the benefit month. Figure 1 reaffirms this SNAP benefit cycle. Since we are most interested in the feature at the start of the benefit cycle, we focus on those households for whom days 0–3 are all observed (dayinterval = 0, 1, 2, and 3). The ratio of total SNAP expenditures in these days to monthly SNAP benefits is Ratio, which is the dependent variable in our mixture model.5 Because interview windows are distributed evenly throughout the benefit month, many observations do not include the necessary four days. We additionally restrict the sample in the following ways: (a) we exclude SNAP households with benefits less than $20 per month, and (b) the primary household respondents must be adults (age of primary respondent greater than 19). We also drop households missing values for any of our included explanatory variables. These conditions leave us 734 food acquisition events and 163 households. Full details of the explanatory variables and their construction is in appendix tables 1 and 2, including a description of how we built categorical variables from the survey’s coded responses. In many cases, we took a variable with, for example, five responses and made it into one or two dummy variables by combining several responses into a single category; this allows us to keep the explanatory variables to a manageable number. Notable variables beyond a number of standard demographic ones are as follow: the number of dinners eaten together as a family at home; self-assessed health and diet ratings; tobacco usage; use of nutrition labels when shopping; familiarity with My Pyramid and My Plate diet recommendations; reported food security; whether the household used a food pantry or food bank in the previous month; frequency of grocery list usage; travel time to the household’s primary food store; usual means of getting to their food store; whether the household owns or rents their residence; how frequently they pay their bills on time; and whether the household had used a payday loan in the previous six months. For a full list of the explanatory variables, see appendix table 1. Results The estimation of the mixture model results in the finding of two groups of SNAP recipients, which we denote as the patient and impatient groups. A model selection criterion was not needed as models with more than two groups failed to converge. Out of our 163 households, we find 63 members in the impatient group (39% of the sample) and 100 members in the patient group (61%). Recalling that classification confidence is good if the entropy measure ER exceeds 0.8, we are pleased to report that our model has a value of ER=0.9574, so the classification of these households into patient and impatient groups has a high degree of confidence. Figure 2 clearly displays the vast difference in average early-benefit cycle spending behavior by members of these two groups. The impatient group spends four times as much of their monthly SNAP benefit in those first few days of the benefit cycle as the households in the patient group. While the patient households spend only slightly more than a proportional share of their monthly benefits on days 0 to 3 of the benefit cycle (a 17.7% spending ratio in 13.3% of the days), the impatient households spend an average of 67.2% of their benefit, over two-thirds of the benefit gone with roughly four weeks left in the benefit month. Figure 2 View largeDownload slide First four days of SNAP expenditure ratios by group Figure 2 View largeDownload slide First four days of SNAP expenditure ratios by group The estimated coefficients of the mixture model are shown in table 1, along with measures of their statistical precision. These results show that having a job makes impatient households spend their SNAP benefits faster (expected increase in ratio=0.289) while having more kids at home makes them spend their SNAP benefits more slowly (expected decrease in ratio per kid=0.161); neither of these variables has a significant effect on patient household spending. Impatient people spend their SNAP benefits faster if they use tobacco (0.167) or rate themselves as more unhealthy (base category, but healthier ratings have negative estimated coefficients), again with little similar effect among the patient households. Using a grocery list regularly slows the SNAP spending of impatient households (-0.182). We also see more even spending from impatient households who choose their primary grocery store because of its produce (-0.246), but faster spending by impatient households who choose their primary store for variety or closeness (0.314 and 0.165, respectively). Similarly, impatient households who choose their prime store for prices have higher ratios of early-month spending (0.036); loyalty programs, on the other hand, tend to reduce spending at the beginning of the month (-0.125), perhaps due to discount or coupon programs. Owning their house (0.296) and having some money in the bank (0.225) both led impatient households to spend their SNAP benefit faster, likely because of a greater ability to buy food with cash later in the benefit month. Considering that these are expected changes in the share of monthly SNAP benefit spent in the first four days of the benefit month, these are quite large effect sizes. Table 1 Mixture Model Regression Results Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Table 1 Mixture Model Regression Results Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Interestingly, while the mixture model results show both that a number of the explanatory variables do affect the rapidity of SNAP spending and that some explanatory variables have very different marginal effects on SNAP spending for patient versus impatient households, there are few statistically significant differences between patient and impatient households in the average values of these explanatory variables, presented in table 2. Impatient households self-rate their diet slightly worse, use a grocery list somewhat more often, are more likely to choose their primary food store based on price, but less likely to choose it based on variety, closeness, or because it has a loyalty program. Impatient households face a somewhat longer driving distance to their primary store (5.6 versus 3.8 miles) and have fewer SNAP-accepting stores nearby than do the patient households. Table 2 Comparing Characteristics across the Groups Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) Table 2 Comparing Characteristics across the Groups Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) More notable are the significant differences we do not find. The patient and impatient households do not differ significantly in working, education, number of kids in the home, eating together as a family, reported food security, or the use of food pantries. Importantly, there is no significant difference in total earnings or amount of SNAP benefit between our two groups. Both groups are equally likely to use their own car as their primary means of getting to the grocery store, and report very similar financial conditions. To confirm that demographic and socioeconomic differences do not drive the divide between the two groups, we estimated a series of logit models that attempted to predict the group membership of our households from the set of variables included in our regression models. Starting with just the demographic variables, then adding two subsets of financial and health variables, and finally the full set of forty-two variables that includes things as varied as reasons for grocery shopping store choice, how often you pay your bills on time, and how often the family eats meals together, we find very little predictive power and only four statistically significant variables out of forty-two included in the fullest specification. These results are provided in appendix table 3. The clear message of these empirical results is that the SNAP benefit cycle is caused by a subset of SNAP recipients, but the behavior of those households is not driven by some difference that forces their shopping pattern to vary. While we have demonstrated that spending behavior differs, we cannot track when households actually consume the food they purchase. It is possible that our impatient group is composed of impatient shoppers who then budget their consumption of that food evenly through the month, thus suffering little or no negative effects. However, we cannot find an explanation for why some households would shop in such a pattern. Based on the data on earned income, car ownership, and other variables, the households in the impatient group are not spending all their money at once because it is harder for them to get to the store or because they have less cash income. The simple story seems to be that a share of SNAP households (39%) choose to spend a large share of their SNAP benefits very rapidly as soon as they are received. Implications While our patient and impatient groups report roughly equal food security in the early days of the benefit month, food insecurity does rise through the SNAP benefit month. Based on the full sample of SNAP households in FoodAPS, low or very low food security rises from 44% to 48% of SNAP households when the first ten and last ten days of the benefit month are compared, meaning that 4% more SNAP households become food insecure by the end of their benefit month. While respondents are supposed to consider the entire month, that people more frequently recall their current circumstances is not surprising. Thus, it is likely that some impatient households are running low on financial resources with which to purchase food at the end of their benefit month. It is also possible that better budgeting of SNAP benefits could improve this situation. Thus, it could be worth trying to help impatient SNAP households to utilize their SNAP benefit more evenly throughout the month. The USDA can easily identify impatient households by examining their SNAP spending in the first few days of the benefit month. The few statistically significant differences between patient and impatient households suggest that the behavioral differences are not driven by a difference in circumstances. Nor could as simple a nudge as encouraging the use of grocery lists completely solve the problem, because while our results show that grocery list usage does help, nearly half of the impatient households already regularly use a grocery list. Thus, an educational program might be one effective response; that is, teaching these households some basic budgeting skills and tools, and helping them to understand the potential benefit of a more evenly distributed spending pattern. Another possible response would be to provide SNAP benefits more frequently, such as twice a month. Such a policy change was raised as a possible remedy to the SNAP benefit cycle by Smith et al. (2016). It should even be possible to target the twice-monthly benefits specifically to those SNAP recipients who need the nudge toward more even spending. Conclusions By examining the SNAP benefit cycle at the household level using a finite mixture model, we find that the phenomenon is caused by a minority of SNAP recipients. Within the subsample of households in the FoodAPS dataset examined here, 39% of SNAP recipients are in our impatient group, spending roughly twice the average amount of their monthly SNAP benefits within the first four days of receiving them. The remaining households appear to budget their benefits evenly throughout the month and should not be of concern to policymakers. A potential implication of these findings is that educational programs might be of benefit to some SNAP households. If the calorie deficits at the end of the SNAP month (Todd 2015) result from households’ expenditure patterns, consumer education in food budgeting, use of grocery lists, and other techniques designed to encourage smoother spending over the month could be helpful. Another potential implication is that allowing households to opt into more frequent SNAP disbursal could be of benefit. In either case, our results suggest that the ill-effects of non-smoothed consumption behavior are concentrated in a small subset of households. Policies that encourage households to choose what is best for them, in this context, could have beneficial results. Funding Funding for this project was provided by USDA/FNS under cooperative agreement 58-5000-5-0009. Footnotes 1 While the SNAP benefit cycle is the most common term for this phenomenon, it has also been referred to as “intra-month spending cyclicality” and “SNAP benefit-month spending cyclicality” in the literature; cf., Hastings and Washington (2010) and Mastrobuoni and Weinberg (2009). 2 Normally, food insecurity and health status variables are not included as explanatory variables when evaluating outcomes related to the SNAP program as they are known to be endogenous to SNAP participation. However, in this case, we are not trying to predict SNAP participation or a treatment effect on some outcome variable (say, obesity) from SNAP participation. Rather, we are trying to explain differences in behavior among SNAP participation; if food insecurity makes rapid spending of SNAP benefits more likely, we need to know that. Further, if we drop the food insecurity and health status variables from the model, the results are qualitatively the same and quantitatively very similar, with a small increase in the difference in the average value of the dependent variable across the two groups. 3 We include variables here beyond those previously associated with patience/impatience (cf., Aguiar and Hurst 2005; Mastrobuoni and Weinberg 2009) because we are hoping to identify any food shopping-specific traits correlated with impatience so that educational programs could be designed to minimize this behavior. 4 The FoodAPS household is defined as all persons who live together and share food and who expect to be present at the sampled address during at least part of the data collection week. 5 We name the dependent variable Ratio to distinguish it from the daily ratio, also discussed above. Acknowledgments The authors thank the editor, Craig Gundersen, as well as two referees, Travis Smith, Chen Zhen, and conference attendees at the 2017 AAEA Meetings for their helpful comments. The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the Economic Research Service or the US Department of Agriculture. References Aguiar M. , Hurst E. . 2005 . Consumption versus Expenditure . Journal of Political Economy 113 ( 5 ): 919 – 48 . Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Almond D. , Hoynes H.W. , Schanzenbach D.W. . 2011 . Inside the War on Poverty: The Impact of Food Stamps on Birth Outcomes . The Review of Economics and Statistics 93 ( 2 ): 387 – 403 . Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Celeux G. , Soromenho G. . 1996 . An Entropy Criterion for Assessing the Number of Clusters in a Mixture Model . Journal of Classification 13 : 195 – 212 . Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Coleman-Jensen A. , Rabbitt M. , Gregory C. , Singh A. . 2016 . 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Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Appendix Table 1 Descriptive Statistics of Data Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Appendix Table 1 Descriptive Statistics of Data Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Appendix Table 2 Specific Coding of Variables from Original Dataset Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Appendix Table 2 Specific Coding of Variables from Original Dataset Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Appendix Table 3 Logit Coefficient Estimates for Group Selection Prediction Model VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 Note: Robust standard errors in parentheses. Asterisks indicate the following: *** = p < 0.01, **= p < 0.05, and *= p < 0.1. Appendix Table 3 Logit Coefficient Estimates for Group Selection Prediction Model VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 Note: Robust standard errors in parentheses. Asterisks indicate the following: *** = p < 0.01, **= p < 0.05, and *= p < 0.1. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association 2018. This work is written by US Government employees and is in the public domain in the US. This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy Oxford University Press

Re-Examining the SNAP Benefit Cycle Allowing for Heterogeneity

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Oxford University Press
Copyright
Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association 2018. This work is written by US Government employees and is in the public domain in the US.
ISSN
2040-5790
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2040-5804
D.O.I.
10.1093/aepp/ppy013
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Abstract

Abstract A well-known feature of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is that some recipients spend a disproportionate amount of their monthly benefit early in the month. Using a finite mixture model that optimally separates households into two groups, coupled with the National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey, we re-examine this spending pattern. Results show that a minority of SNAP recipients cause the benefit cycle by spending, on average, two-thirds of their monthly benefit within the first four days. A potential implication of these findings is that more frequent SNAP benefit disbursal or educational programs designed to encourage smoother spending over the month might be of benefit to some SNAP households. SNAP, SNAP benefit cycle, food insecurity, mixture model Both anecdotal evidence and social science research have documented what is known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefit cycle, in which SNAP recipients spend much of their monthly benefit very early in the month. Such behavior is of concern to policy makers because SNAP is the government’s main and largest food assistance program (previously and still often known as food stamps), and if recipients spend their benefit early in the month they may experience nutritional deficiencies or food insecurity later in the benefit month. Previous studies have established that, on a purely descriptive level, about 20% of SNAP recipients experience very low food security (Coleman-Jensen et al. 2016). It seems a reasonable hypothesis that if SNAP recipients spend most of their SNAP benefit early in their benefit month, they have a higher probability of being food insecure late in the benefit month when they may lack the financial resources to purchase sufficient food. Past research has shown convincingly that SNAP participation improves the well-being of recipients over numerous dimensions, including reductions in food insecurity (Nord and Golla 2009; Gregory, Rabbitt, and Ribar 2015; Gundersen and Ziliak 2015), improvements in health outcomes such as anemia (Kreider et al. 2012) and birth outcomes (Almond, Hoynes, and Schanzenbach 2011), and increases in the quality of participants’ diets and nutrition (Gregory et al. 2013; Gundersen 2015). Recognizing the benefit of the SNAP program, understanding the nature and causes of the benefit cycle is important because policies that smooth out the SNAP cycle could further improve both the effectiveness and cost efficiency of the program. This paper is motivated by the fact that while the existence of the SNAP benefit cycle is well established, there is considerably less research that has examined SNAP spending behavior across the benefit month at the micro level. Until recently, this has been due to lack of data. However, from 2012 to 2013 the U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted the first nationally representative survey on household food purchases and acquisition. The National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey (FoodAPS) oversampled low-income households and asked about both food-at-home (FAH) and food-away-from-home (FAFH) purchase information, inquired about any sources for acquiring free food, and collected demographic and income information including SNAP participation and the amount of any SNAP benefit. The survey also recorded how each purchase was paid for and collected information on households’ SNAP receipt date. These data provide the best opportunity to date for examining the SNAP benefit cycle at the household level (a fuller description of this data is below). In this paper, we re-examine the SNAP benefit cycle using a finite mixture model that allows different groups of SNAP recipients to display distinct patterns of spending across the benefit month. In estimating a finite mixture model, the number of groups is chosen by model selection criteria, and which group each household belongs to is chosen to maximize the likelihood function. Using the empirical estimates, we attempt to identify whether the benefit cycle is caused by the behavior of a sub-group of SNAP recipients and then to identify behaviors correlated with that suboptimal spending. Ideally, successful identification of such behaviors would allow the design of program improvements that could help SNAP better address nutritional outcomes and food insecurity. We find clear classification of our sample into two groups—designated as patient and impatient groups—that display wildly different spending patterns for their monthly SNAP benefits. The smaller group of impatient households spends two-thirds of their monthly benefit in the first four days, while patient households only spend one-sixth. That the SNAP benefit cycle is confined to a subset of households has implications for designing policy to address the issue. The rest of the paper is organized as follows. A literature review provides context for the model that is developed in the following section, along with a description of the estimation methodology. The data are described next. This is followed by our empirical results. Finally, implications and conclusions complete the paper. Conceptual Background The life-cycle or permanent income hypothesis is a mainstay of textbook economic theory. According to this model, households’ expectations of lifetime (permanent) income shape their purchasing and decision-making activity in the present more than their current actual income (Friedman 1957; Hall 1978). If markets for credit, information, and insurance are complete, households can always borrow against future income in order to execute optimal consumption decisions today. A testable prediction that has developed from the empirical literature in this domain is that predictable changes in income—for example, the specific timing of regular paychecks, stipends, or program benefit payments—should have no effect on consumption. Put another way, consumption decisions in the current period will not be related to current income or its timing; choices about consumption in the short- and long-term are perfectly time-consistent. Behavioral departures from the life-cycle or permanent income hypothesis’ rational calculus of utility could be due to market imperfections or other economic causes. In the case of the SNAP benefit cycle, some research has focused on preference heterogeneity—that is, difference in time preferences between SNAP and non-SNAP households.1 In this context, the behavior of SNAP participants has been found to be consistent with hyperbolic discounting, which describes the situation in which people discount utility in the near future much more heavily than in the not-so-distant future (Laibson, 1997; Smith et al. 2016; Wilde and Ranney 2000). Empirical research has suggested that this could lead to reductions in food purchases and nutritional quality at the end of the benefit month. For example, Shapiro (2005) showed that the SNAP cycle led to decreased caloric intake as well as declining dollar value of intake across the benefit month. Differences in the estimates of these decreases implied a shift away from higher- to lower- quality foods over the course of the month. Wilde and Ranney (2000) examined average calorie intake and found decreased intakes in the fourth week of the SNAP distribution month. Todd (2015) found that, before the increase in SNAP benefits associated with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, caloric intake declined by as much as 25% in the fourth week of the SNAP month. Tarasuk, Mclntyre, and Li (2007) showed that low-income women’s dietary quality was sensitive to the time since the receipt of income. Finally, Kharmats et al. (2014) found that nutrient quality and energy declined for each day removed from SNAP receipt in a sample of low-income African-Americans in Baltimore. Other research has shown that this lack of smoothing behavior may be linked to food insecurity. For example, Hamrick and Andrews (2016) used the American Time Use Survey to show that SNAP recipients were more likely to have a day without eating at the end of the SNAP benefit month. Weinstein et al. (2009) found that low-income households were 5.5 times as likely to report food insecurity at the end of the benefit month as at the beginning; additionally, they found that in households with children, food-insecure households were much more likely to have a child with anemia. Our study contributes to this literature by examining unobserved heterogeneity in responses to SNAP receipt and using administrative data to check the robustness of the results. This allows us to test the hypothesis that the SNAP benefit cycle is caused by a subgroup of SNAP recipients, and to then test for observables correlated with group membership. Methodology In order to test our theory that the SNAP benefit cycle might be caused by only a subset of SNAP recipients, we apply a normal finite mixture model to data on spending patterns from the FoodAPS dataset. A mixture model assumes that data are generated by two or more different unobserved processes with each observation being assigned a probability of belonging to each process or group (Dempster, Laird, and Rubin 1977). The model specification of the data-generating process in each group can be different, or even if the model stays constant across groups, the model parameters will differ. During the estimation process, the parameters of each group’s model are chosen to maximize the likelihood function, and the number of groups is chosen to optimize a model selection criteria such as the Akaike Information Criterion or AIC. For this application, we apply a normal finite mixture model, meaning that each group is assumed to follow a normal linear regression model. Our chosen dependent variable is the percentage of each household’s monthly SNAP benefit spent in the first four days of the benefit month. This variable is selected because it represents a strong signal of the SNAP benefit cycle. Recipients who spend their SNAP benefit evenly throughout the entire month would spend about 13% in the first four days. In extreme cases of the type of behavior that produces the benefit cycle, some households are observed spending their entire SNAP benefit in the first four days. By focusing on this measure of very rapid spending, we narrow our examination to the behavior that is most indicative of the spending pattern we are seeking to identify and modify. In these first few days, the spending rates of the two groups are the most different, making classification into groups the most accurate. The later in the benefit month we go, the more similar the spending rates become as the impatient households have little left to spend, while the patient group steadily spends small amounts all month. Thus, we focus on the first few days of the benefit month because that is where the informative behavior is displayed that allows us to accurately classify people into the two groups. To explain the share of SNAP benefits spent in the first four days of the month, we include a host of factors in different categories: demographic variables, financial management measures, health-related self-ratings, and store-choice/location. These explanatory variables are identical in all group’s models. Insight can be gained from the differences in the model parameters or in the distribution of exogenous variable values in different groups. We include the amount of monthly SNAP benefits, indicators for three levels of food security, and an indicator of whether the household has utilized a food pantry in the past month.2 The demographic variables include standard variables such as age, gender, race, household size, employment status, and the number of children and elderly in the household. Health measures include variables for tobacco use, self-assessed health status, self-assessed diet quality, and how frequently the shopper looks at nutritional labels. In the shopping category, we have variables for travel time to the shopper’s favored store location, reasons for choosing their usual grocery outlet, and the frequency of grocery list usage.3 The financial measures include whether the household owns their house or apartment, how regularly they pay their bills on time, a self-assessed measure of the household’s financial condition, and an indicator for the presence of more or less than $2,000 in liquid assets. Given this set of explanatory variables, the share of SNAP benefits expended in the first four days of the benefit cycle (Ratio) is represented as a linear model, Ratioi= βoj+ DGiβ1j+ FSiβ2j+ Hiβ3j+ FNiβ4j+ SHiβ5j+ ɛi (1) where DG is a vector of demographic variables, FS are the food security measures, H is a vector of health-related variables, FN is a vector of financial measures, and SH is a vector of variables about shopping location choices and shopping behavior. The βs are parameters to be estimated, with the first subscript denoting the subset of variables they are associated with, and the second subscript denoting the group the observation belongs to (j = 1, …, J), while ɛi is a stochastic term for observation i. Ratio, the share of SNAP benefits spent in the first four days, cannot be negative and is top-censored at 1. Some households do spend more than their monthly SNAP benefit because benefits do rollover if not spent, so it is possible to spend more than 100% in a month or in the first four days. While spending ratios above 1 are therefore possible, we felt that top-censored was preferred. Although the dependent variable, Ratio, is censored on both ends of its range, we are estimating standard linear regression models. There are 45 observations at the lower limit, and 10 observations at the upper limit from a total of 163. While the model results do produce 32 predicted values above 1 and 17 below zero, it is important to note that values greater than one are theoretically possible, and the vast majority of the predicted values outside the imposed range are quite nearby (e.g., 13 out of 17 negative predictions are between 0 and -0.1). Given this, we believe it is defensible to apply linear regression models to this data in spite of its censoring. The likelihood function for a finite mixture model of normal distributions is given by L(π, β, σ | X, y)=∏j=1J∏i=1nπij φRatioi-Xiβjσ (2) where the πij are the probabilities that observation i belongs to group j, φ(•) is the pdf of a standard normal distribution, X is the collection of all the explanatory variables, and βj is the vector of all regression coefficients for group j. To estimate the mixture model for a given number of groups, one maximizes the likelihood function in equation (2) subject to constraints on the πij to ensure they sum to one for each observation. We use the Expectation Maximization (EM) algorithm to achieve this (Dempster, Laird, and Rubin 1977; Frühwirth-Schnatter 2006). The EM algorithm works in two steps: in the first, E-step, with a set of estimates for πij in hand, one takes the conditional expectation of the log likelihood L (y, π | X, β, σ). Then, given the estimates of βj and σ from the E-step, find a new set of πij that maximizes the complete likelihood function in equation (2) conditional on these updated regression parameters (M-step). This loop repeats until convergence to a maximum is achieved. Finally, mixture models are estimated for several different numbers of groups and a model selection criterion such as the AIC is employed to choose the optimal number of groups. To measure the success at classifying the observations into the two groups, we compute the entropy measure of discrimination suggested by Celeux and Soromenho (1996). Discrimination measures how confidently the model has assigned observations to one of the groups. The entropy measure is computed in two steps, E= ∑i=1n∑j=1Jπijln⁡(πij) (3) and ER= 1 –E/[nln(J)]. (4) With the scaling in equation (4), the value of ER is bounded between 0 and 1. If ER = 0 it means the estimated probabilities of belonging to each model are all 1/J (complete uncertainty); when ER = 1, all observations can be placed in a group with complete certainty (probability = 1 for that group, 0 for all others). Common practice is that values above 0.8 demonstrate strong confidence in the classification process. Data The USDA’s National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey (FoodAPS) is the first nationally representative survey to collect comprehensive data about household food purchases and acquisition.4 The seven-day survey was conducted between April 2012 and January 2013 on a nationally-representative sample of 4,826 households. This survey covers SNAP households, low-income households not participating in SNAP, and higher-income households. SNAP households were oversampled to ensure good statistical variation and coverage of this subsample. Sampling weights are included to transform the data set into a nationally representative sample. For a one week data collection period, each participating household was asked to record food-at-home (FAH) and food-away-from-home (FAFH) purchase information, and also reported all sources of free food. Respondents also participated in two interviews that aimed to collect detailed household-level and individual-level information. This detailed information includes variables about shopping outlet choice and the reasons for those choices, self-assessed health measures, measures of both household financial condition and financial management, and many other variables on both food acquisition habits and household demographics. FoodAPS has several advantages for this project. First, FoodAPS collected extensive information on demographic characteristics, labor market activity, program participation, income, and expenditures—both food and non-food—for each household. This is helpful in determining if characteristics differ across the groups estimated by the mixture model. Additionally, each individual’s shopping events are also characterized by the payment type. In particular, we know whether acquisitions are paid for with SNAP benefits, cash, or a combination. Finally, the dataset also lists whether respondents are SNAP recipients and contains an administrative verification of that status (which is important as SNAP status is frequently misreported). We focus on a subsample: the 1,581 of the 4,826 total households that were administratively verified SNAP recipients during the week of the survey. The initial interview was usually conducted right before the seven-day survey period to screen the eligible households. Using information in the FoodAPS data set, we created a variable “dayinterval” to record the number of days between the first day of the seven-day survey period and the last SNAP benefits date. Because each household receives SNAP benefits on the same calendar day as the previous month, dayinterval equals 0 on the day that SNAP benefits are received and reaches a maximum of 30 before the benefit cycle repeats. We are interested in the pattern of how households redeem their SNAP benefits throughout the month. Thus, we calculate the daily SNAP expenditure ratio (“daily ratio” for short) as the percentage of daily SNAP expenditure over monthly SNAP benefits, letting the daily ratio equal 0 if there is no shopping event on a survey day. Figure 1 presents the average daily ratio of SNAP expenditure for all SNAP recipients in the dataset throughout the SNAP benefit month. The average daily ratio is 30.27% on the day of benefit receipt (i.e., dayinterval = 0), which means that the average household spends about 30% of its SNAP benefits on the SNAP receipt day. The average daily ratio drops to 5.87% on the third day. Throughout the rest of the benefit month, the daily ratio displays a consistent decrease. Figure 1 View largeDownload slide Average ratio of SNAP expenditures to SNAP benefit by day of benefit cycle Figure 1 View largeDownload slide Average ratio of SNAP expenditures to SNAP benefit by day of benefit cycle As demonstrated by figure 1, a well-known and oft-studied feature of SNAP recipients is that, on average, SNAP participants spend a large percentage of their benefits within the first few days of the benefit month. Figure 1 reaffirms this SNAP benefit cycle. Since we are most interested in the feature at the start of the benefit cycle, we focus on those households for whom days 0–3 are all observed (dayinterval = 0, 1, 2, and 3). The ratio of total SNAP expenditures in these days to monthly SNAP benefits is Ratio, which is the dependent variable in our mixture model.5 Because interview windows are distributed evenly throughout the benefit month, many observations do not include the necessary four days. We additionally restrict the sample in the following ways: (a) we exclude SNAP households with benefits less than $20 per month, and (b) the primary household respondents must be adults (age of primary respondent greater than 19). We also drop households missing values for any of our included explanatory variables. These conditions leave us 734 food acquisition events and 163 households. Full details of the explanatory variables and their construction is in appendix tables 1 and 2, including a description of how we built categorical variables from the survey’s coded responses. In many cases, we took a variable with, for example, five responses and made it into one or two dummy variables by combining several responses into a single category; this allows us to keep the explanatory variables to a manageable number. Notable variables beyond a number of standard demographic ones are as follow: the number of dinners eaten together as a family at home; self-assessed health and diet ratings; tobacco usage; use of nutrition labels when shopping; familiarity with My Pyramid and My Plate diet recommendations; reported food security; whether the household used a food pantry or food bank in the previous month; frequency of grocery list usage; travel time to the household’s primary food store; usual means of getting to their food store; whether the household owns or rents their residence; how frequently they pay their bills on time; and whether the household had used a payday loan in the previous six months. For a full list of the explanatory variables, see appendix table 1. Results The estimation of the mixture model results in the finding of two groups of SNAP recipients, which we denote as the patient and impatient groups. A model selection criterion was not needed as models with more than two groups failed to converge. Out of our 163 households, we find 63 members in the impatient group (39% of the sample) and 100 members in the patient group (61%). Recalling that classification confidence is good if the entropy measure ER exceeds 0.8, we are pleased to report that our model has a value of ER=0.9574, so the classification of these households into patient and impatient groups has a high degree of confidence. Figure 2 clearly displays the vast difference in average early-benefit cycle spending behavior by members of these two groups. The impatient group spends four times as much of their monthly SNAP benefit in those first few days of the benefit cycle as the households in the patient group. While the patient households spend only slightly more than a proportional share of their monthly benefits on days 0 to 3 of the benefit cycle (a 17.7% spending ratio in 13.3% of the days), the impatient households spend an average of 67.2% of their benefit, over two-thirds of the benefit gone with roughly four weeks left in the benefit month. Figure 2 View largeDownload slide First four days of SNAP expenditure ratios by group Figure 2 View largeDownload slide First four days of SNAP expenditure ratios by group The estimated coefficients of the mixture model are shown in table 1, along with measures of their statistical precision. These results show that having a job makes impatient households spend their SNAP benefits faster (expected increase in ratio=0.289) while having more kids at home makes them spend their SNAP benefits more slowly (expected decrease in ratio per kid=0.161); neither of these variables has a significant effect on patient household spending. Impatient people spend their SNAP benefits faster if they use tobacco (0.167) or rate themselves as more unhealthy (base category, but healthier ratings have negative estimated coefficients), again with little similar effect among the patient households. Using a grocery list regularly slows the SNAP spending of impatient households (-0.182). We also see more even spending from impatient households who choose their primary grocery store because of its produce (-0.246), but faster spending by impatient households who choose their primary store for variety or closeness (0.314 and 0.165, respectively). Similarly, impatient households who choose their prime store for prices have higher ratios of early-month spending (0.036); loyalty programs, on the other hand, tend to reduce spending at the beginning of the month (-0.125), perhaps due to discount or coupon programs. Owning their house (0.296) and having some money in the bank (0.225) both led impatient households to spend their SNAP benefit faster, likely because of a greater ability to buy food with cash later in the benefit month. Considering that these are expected changes in the share of monthly SNAP benefit spent in the first four days of the benefit month, these are quite large effect sizes. Table 1 Mixture Model Regression Results Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Table 1 Mixture Model Regression Results Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Group1: Impatient Group2: Patient Variable Coefficient std.err z-score p-value coefficient std.err z-score p-value Constant 1.734 0.055 31.666 0.000 0.004 0.119 0.034 0.973 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex 0.169 0.014 −12.209 0.000 0.029 0.029 −0.972 0.331 Age −0.010 0.000 −22.764 0.000 0.006 0.001 5.082 0.000 Work 0.289 0.013 22.203 0.000 −0.014 0.022 −0.630 0.529 racecat1 −0.232 0.023 −9.999 0.000 −0.056 0.027 −2.090 0.037 racecat2 −0.330 0.023 −14.419 0.000 −0.089 0.034 −2.607 0.009 Highedu −0.011 0.002 −5.088 0.000 0.003 0.003 1.040 0.298 Hhsize 0.014 0.004 3.492 0.000 −0.004 0.014 −0.308 0.758 Kidsnum −0.161 0.006 −26.644 0.000 −0.002 0.021 −0.119 0.905 Oldersnum 0.058 0.009 6.743 0.000 −0.070 0.022 −3.160 0.002 Nmealshome 0.002 0.002 0.868 0.385 0.006 0.005 1.246 0.213 Nmealstogether −0.012 0.001 −16.227 0.000 0.001 0.003 0.548 0.584 Health Lifestyle Tobacco 0.167 0.010 16.722 0.000 0.022 0.026 0.822 0.411 healthrate1 −0.583 0.021 −27.54 0.000 0.009 0.049 0.184 0.854 healthrate2 −0.522 0.016 −32.425 0.000 −0.086 0.040 −2.184 0.029 dietrate1 0.016 0.027 0.577 0.564 0.195 0.052 3.733 0.000 dietrate2 0.011 0.014 0.806 0.420 0.066 0.037 1.790 0.073 Nutritionfact −0.012 0.011 −1.051 0.293 0.015 0.028 0.531 0.595 Nutritionsearch 0.232 0.012 19.984 0.000 −0.052 0.033 −1.581 0.114 Healthycost −0.003 0.010 −0.284 0.776 −0.108 0.025 −4.316 0.000 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt 0.001 0.000 17.497 0.000 0.000 0.000 2.863 0.004 adltfscat1 0.150 0.015 9.851 0.000 −0.183 0.037 −4.936 0.000 adltfscat2 −0.052 0.015 −3.398 0.001 −0.111 0.032 −3.450 0.001 adltfscat3 −0.148 0.013 −11.309 0.000 −0.134 0.028 −4.742 0.000 Foodpantry −0.061 0.017 −3.622 0.000 −0.002 0.037 −0.052 0.958 Food Shopping Primstoretraveltime −0.009 0.001 −12.551 0.000 0.001 0.002 0.582 0.561 Grocerylistfrequency −0.182 0.008 −21.614 0.000 −0.043 0.027 −1.587 0.113 Primstoreprices 0.036 0.012 2.919 0.004 −0.017 0.022 −0.772 0.440 Primstoreproduce −0.246 0.016 −15.405 0.000 0.068 0.035 1.932 0.053 Primstoremeat −0.117 0.019 −6.054 0.000 −0.020 0.038 −0.539 0.590 Primstorequality 0.183 0.015 12.562 0.000 −0.037 0.036 −1.052 0.293 Primstorevariety 0.314 0.013 23.575 0.000 0.010 0.029 0.345 0.730 Primstorespecial −0.180 0.028 −6.484 0.000 −0.187 0.075 −2.505 0.012 Primstoreclose 0.165 0.013 12.491 0.000 −0.034 0.022 −1.504 0.133 Primstoreloyalty −0.125 0.021 −6.024 0.000 0.083 0.032 2.642 0.008 shopplace1 −0.267 0.016 −16.261 0.000 −0.048 0.024 −1.964 0.050 shopplace2 0.010 0.019 0.524 0.600 −0.004 0.027 −0.163 0.870 shopplace3 −0.313 0.024 −12.96 0.000 −0.121 0.073 −1.653 0.098 shopplace4 0.361 0.030 11.94 0.000 0.011 0.086 0.128 0.898 shopmeans1 0.244 0.018 13.77 0.000 0.016 0.042 0.378 0.705 shopmeans2 0.334 0.023 14.588 0.000 −0.013 0.044 −0.287 0.774 Financial Situation Ownhousing 0.296 0.010 30.884 0.000 −0.005 0.030 −0.164 0.870 Billsontime 0.025 0.012 2.059 0.039 0.023 0.025 0.913 0.361 Finccondition −0.113 0.012 −9.488 0.000 −0.025 0.034 −0.734 0.463 liqassets2000 0.225 0.026 8.579 0.000 0.099 0.053 1.854 0.064 Observations 63 100 R2 0.978 Interestingly, while the mixture model results show both that a number of the explanatory variables do affect the rapidity of SNAP spending and that some explanatory variables have very different marginal effects on SNAP spending for patient versus impatient households, there are few statistically significant differences between patient and impatient households in the average values of these explanatory variables, presented in table 2. Impatient households self-rate their diet slightly worse, use a grocery list somewhat more often, are more likely to choose their primary food store based on price, but less likely to choose it based on variety, closeness, or because it has a loyalty program. Impatient households face a somewhat longer driving distance to their primary store (5.6 versus 3.8 miles) and have fewer SNAP-accepting stores nearby than do the patient households. Table 2 Comparing Characteristics across the Groups Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) Table 2 Comparing Characteristics across the Groups Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) Variable Explanation Impatient Patient P-value P-value (Lower one-sided) P-value (Upper one-sided) Count Mean (sd) Count Mean (sd) Dependent variable Ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days 63 0.672 100 0.177 0.000 1.000 0.000 (0.293) (0.220) Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 63 0.175 100 0.270 0.163 0.919 0.081 (0.383) (0.446) Age Year 63 40.746 100 39.860 0.672 0.664 0.336 (13.262) (12.792) Work Yes = 1 63 0.317 100 0.380 0.420 0.210 0.790 (0.469) (0.488) racecat1 White = 1 63 0.730 100 0.660 0.350 0.825 0.175 (0.447) (0.476) racecat2 Black = 1 63 0.175 100 0.160 0.809 0.596 0.404 (0.383) (0.368) racecat3 Others = 1 63 0.095 100 0.140 0.399 0.200 0.800 (0.296) (0.349) Highedu Higher education between household heads 63 19.635 99 19.323 0.510 0.745 0.255 (2.802) (3.006) Hhsize Household size 63 3.810 100 3.330 0.129 0.935 0.065 (2.162) (1.815) Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 63 1.651 100 1.340 0.194 0.903 0.097 (1.557) (1.430) Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 63 0.238 100 0.240 0.982 0.491 0.509 (0.499) (0.534) Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 62 5.774 100 5.560 0.617 0.692 0.308 (2.658) (2.634) Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 54 7.296 84 6.262 0.264 0.868 0.132 (5.910) (4.842) incamount1 Amount of earnings from work for respondent 49 411.265 76 401.013 0.929 0.536 0.464 (728.073) (548.451) Incamounttotal Total amount of earnings from work for household 52 764.538 84 757.393 0.973 0.514 0.486 (1264.820) (1123.379) stregion1 Household comes from Northeast (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.200 0.038 0.019 0.981 (0.272) (0.402) stregion2 Household comes from Midwest (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.200 0.690 0.345 0.655 (0.383) (0.402) stregion3 Household comes from South (Yes = 1) 63 0.444 100 0.440 0.956 0.522 0.478 (0.501) (0.499) stregion4 Household comes from West(Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.160 0.032 0.984 0.016 (0.463) (0.368) Health Lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 63 0.381 100 0.440 0.460 0.230 0.770 (0.490) (0.499) healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.210 0.956 0.478 0.522 (0.408) (0.409) healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.730 100 0.680 0.499 0.750 0.250 (0.447) (0.469) healthrate3 Health condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.110 0.320 0.160 0.840 (0.246) (0.314) dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 63 0.079 100 0.220 0.019 0.009 0.991 (0.272) (0.416) dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 63 0.825 100 0.650 0.015 0.992 0.008 (0.383) (0.479) dietrate3 Diet condition is poor (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.130 0.504 0.252 0.748 (0.296) (0.338) Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.200 0.422 0.789 0.211 (0.439) (0.402) Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.210 0.517 0.741 0.259 (0.439) (0.409) Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.476 99 0.475 0.986 0.507 0.493 (0.503) (0.502) Healthytime Respondent is too busy to take time to prepare healthy foods (Yes = 1) 63 0.127 100 0.150 0.683 0.342 0.658 (0.336) (0.359) Mypyramid Heard of MyPyramid (Yes = 1) 63 0.508 100 0.530 0.785 0.393 0.607 (0.504) (0.502) Mypyramidfollow Tried to follow MyPyramid plan recommendations (Yes = 1) 24 0.500 32 0.406 0.494 0.753 0.247 (0.511) (0.499) Myplate Heard of MyPlate (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.190 0.806 0.403 0.597 (0.383) (0.394) Myplatefollow Tried to follow MyPlate guidelines (Yes = 1) 11 0.636 19 0.368 0.167 0.916 0.084 (0.505) (0.496) Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 63 297.365 100 289.780 0.805 0.598 0.402 (185.581) (193.071) adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.286 100 0.360 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.455) (0.482) adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.270 100 0.210 0.382 0.809 0.191 (0.447) (0.409) adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.254 100 0.220 0.620 0.690 0.310 (0.439) (0.416) adltfscat4 Very low food security (Yes = 1) 63 0.190 100 0.210 0.764 0.382 0.618 (0.396) (0.409) Foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 63 0.111 100 0.090 0.661 0.669 0.331 (0.317) (0.288) Kidsbrkfstindex Child’s school breakfasts are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 18 1.000 33 1.000 . . . (0.000) (0.000) Kidslunchindex Child’s school lunches are free or at a reduced price (Yes = 1) 31 0.935 47 0.936 0.990 0.495 0.505 (0.250) (0.247) Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 63 12.349 100 11.300 0.414 0.793 0.207 (8.106) (7.887) grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 63 0.492 100 0.330 0.039 0.980 0.020 (0.504) (0.473) Primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 62 0.774 100 0.590 0.016 0.992 0.008 (0.422) (0.494) Primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.130 0.412 0.794 0.206 (0.385) (0.338) Primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 62 0.097 100 0.150 0.330 0.165 0.835 (0.298) (0.359) Primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 62 0.177 100 0.160 0.774 0.613 0.387 (0.385) (0.368) Primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.129 100 0.240 0.086 0.043 0.957 (0.338) (0.429) Primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.050 0.964 0.482 0.518 (0.216) (0.219) Primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 62 0.371 100 0.530 0.049 0.025 0.975 (0.487) (0.502) Primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 62 0.048 100 0.140 0.065 0.033 0.967 (0.216) (0.349) shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 63 0.381 100 0.400 0.810 0.405 0.595 (0.490) (0.492) shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 63 0.302 100 0.270 0.665 0.668 0.332 (0.463) (0.446) shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 63 0.095 100 0.040 0.154 0.923 0.077 (0.296) (0.197) shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 63 0.048 100 0.040 0.817 0.592 0.408 (0.215) (0.197) shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.630 0.496 0.752 0.248 (0.469) (0.485) shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 63 0.206 100 0.220 0.837 0.419 0.581 (0.408) (0.416) primstoredist_d Driving distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 5.551 92 3.786 0.052 0.974 0.026 (5.907) (5.024) primstoredist_s Straight-line distance, in miles, between residence and primary food store 58 4.339 92 2.803 0.031 0.985 0.015 (4.719) (3.846) snap1 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.25 mi 63 0.794 100 1.630 0.059 0.029 0.971 (1.608) (3.240) snap2 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 0.50 mi 63 3.127 100 5.790 0.093 0.046 0.954 (4.401) (11.989) snap3 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 1 mi 63 11.238 100 17.030 0.176 0.088 0.912 (17.138) (30.947) snap4 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 2 mi 63 33.794 100 48.820 0.217 0.109 0.891 (57.319) (84.768) snap5 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 5 mi 63 153.206 100 232.240 0.317 0.158 0.842 (371.588) (549.932) snap6 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 10 mi 63 472.286 100 819.990 0.230 0.115 0.885 (1210.802) (2077.441) snap7 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 15 mi 63 838.365 100 1305.790 0.283 0.141 0.859 (1831.448) (3116.821) snap8 Number of SNAP-authorized retailers within 30 mi 63 1810.508 100 2180.940 0.520 0.260 0.740 (3046.322) (3861.750) Totalnfexp Household total non-food expenses 63 1034.760 100 726.205 0.191 0.905 0.095 (2245.196) (557.492) Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 63 0.317 100 0.260 0.430 0.785 0.215 (0.469) (0.441) Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 63 0.683 100 0.710 0.712 0.356 0.644 (0.469) (0.456) Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 63 0.175 100 0.180 0.931 0.465 0.535 (0.383) (0.386) liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 63 0.063 100 0.080 0.696 0.348 0.652 (0.246) (0.273) paydayloan6mos Household took out a payday-like loan within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.135 82 0.122 0.832 0.584 0.416 (0.345) (0.329) utilnotpaid6mos Household could not pay full amount of utility bills within last 6 months (Yes = 1) 52 0.385 82 0.329 0.517 0.742 0.258 (0.491) (0.473) Povertyindex Household average income is above 100% poverty guideline for household of this size (Yes = 1) 63 1.540 100 1.460 0.325 0.838 0.162 (0.502) (0.501) More notable are the significant differences we do not find. The patient and impatient households do not differ significantly in working, education, number of kids in the home, eating together as a family, reported food security, or the use of food pantries. Importantly, there is no significant difference in total earnings or amount of SNAP benefit between our two groups. Both groups are equally likely to use their own car as their primary means of getting to the grocery store, and report very similar financial conditions. To confirm that demographic and socioeconomic differences do not drive the divide between the two groups, we estimated a series of logit models that attempted to predict the group membership of our households from the set of variables included in our regression models. Starting with just the demographic variables, then adding two subsets of financial and health variables, and finally the full set of forty-two variables that includes things as varied as reasons for grocery shopping store choice, how often you pay your bills on time, and how often the family eats meals together, we find very little predictive power and only four statistically significant variables out of forty-two included in the fullest specification. These results are provided in appendix table 3. The clear message of these empirical results is that the SNAP benefit cycle is caused by a subset of SNAP recipients, but the behavior of those households is not driven by some difference that forces their shopping pattern to vary. While we have demonstrated that spending behavior differs, we cannot track when households actually consume the food they purchase. It is possible that our impatient group is composed of impatient shoppers who then budget their consumption of that food evenly through the month, thus suffering little or no negative effects. However, we cannot find an explanation for why some households would shop in such a pattern. Based on the data on earned income, car ownership, and other variables, the households in the impatient group are not spending all their money at once because it is harder for them to get to the store or because they have less cash income. The simple story seems to be that a share of SNAP households (39%) choose to spend a large share of their SNAP benefits very rapidly as soon as they are received. Implications While our patient and impatient groups report roughly equal food security in the early days of the benefit month, food insecurity does rise through the SNAP benefit month. Based on the full sample of SNAP households in FoodAPS, low or very low food security rises from 44% to 48% of SNAP households when the first ten and last ten days of the benefit month are compared, meaning that 4% more SNAP households become food insecure by the end of their benefit month. While respondents are supposed to consider the entire month, that people more frequently recall their current circumstances is not surprising. Thus, it is likely that some impatient households are running low on financial resources with which to purchase food at the end of their benefit month. It is also possible that better budgeting of SNAP benefits could improve this situation. Thus, it could be worth trying to help impatient SNAP households to utilize their SNAP benefit more evenly throughout the month. The USDA can easily identify impatient households by examining their SNAP spending in the first few days of the benefit month. The few statistically significant differences between patient and impatient households suggest that the behavioral differences are not driven by a difference in circumstances. Nor could as simple a nudge as encouraging the use of grocery lists completely solve the problem, because while our results show that grocery list usage does help, nearly half of the impatient households already regularly use a grocery list. Thus, an educational program might be one effective response; that is, teaching these households some basic budgeting skills and tools, and helping them to understand the potential benefit of a more evenly distributed spending pattern. Another possible response would be to provide SNAP benefits more frequently, such as twice a month. Such a policy change was raised as a possible remedy to the SNAP benefit cycle by Smith et al. (2016). It should even be possible to target the twice-monthly benefits specifically to those SNAP recipients who need the nudge toward more even spending. Conclusions By examining the SNAP benefit cycle at the household level using a finite mixture model, we find that the phenomenon is caused by a minority of SNAP recipients. Within the subsample of households in the FoodAPS dataset examined here, 39% of SNAP recipients are in our impatient group, spending roughly twice the average amount of their monthly SNAP benefits within the first four days of receiving them. The remaining households appear to budget their benefits evenly throughout the month and should not be of concern to policymakers. A potential implication of these findings is that educational programs might be of benefit to some SNAP households. If the calorie deficits at the end of the SNAP month (Todd 2015) result from households’ expenditure patterns, consumer education in food budgeting, use of grocery lists, and other techniques designed to encourage smoother spending over the month could be helpful. Another potential implication is that allowing households to opt into more frequent SNAP disbursal could be of benefit. In either case, our results suggest that the ill-effects of non-smoothed consumption behavior are concentrated in a small subset of households. Policies that encourage households to choose what is best for them, in this context, could have beneficial results. Funding Funding for this project was provided by USDA/FNS under cooperative agreement 58-5000-5-0009. Footnotes 1 While the SNAP benefit cycle is the most common term for this phenomenon, it has also been referred to as “intra-month spending cyclicality” and “SNAP benefit-month spending cyclicality” in the literature; cf., Hastings and Washington (2010) and Mastrobuoni and Weinberg (2009). 2 Normally, food insecurity and health status variables are not included as explanatory variables when evaluating outcomes related to the SNAP program as they are known to be endogenous to SNAP participation. However, in this case, we are not trying to predict SNAP participation or a treatment effect on some outcome variable (say, obesity) from SNAP participation. Rather, we are trying to explain differences in behavior among SNAP participation; if food insecurity makes rapid spending of SNAP benefits more likely, we need to know that. Further, if we drop the food insecurity and health status variables from the model, the results are qualitatively the same and quantitatively very similar, with a small increase in the difference in the average value of the dependent variable across the two groups. 3 We include variables here beyond those previously associated with patience/impatience (cf., Aguiar and Hurst 2005; Mastrobuoni and Weinberg 2009) because we are hoping to identify any food shopping-specific traits correlated with impatience so that educational programs could be designed to minimize this behavior. 4 The FoodAPS household is defined as all persons who live together and share food and who expect to be present at the sampled address during at least part of the data collection week. 5 We name the dependent variable Ratio to distinguish it from the daily ratio, also discussed above. Acknowledgments The authors thank the editor, Craig Gundersen, as well as two referees, Travis Smith, Chen Zhen, and conference attendees at the 2017 AAEA Meetings for their helpful comments. The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the Economic Research Service or the US Department of Agriculture. References Aguiar M. , Hurst E. . 2005 . Consumption versus Expenditure . Journal of Political Economy 113 ( 5 ): 919 – 48 . Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Almond D. , Hoynes H.W. , Schanzenbach D.W. . 2011 . Inside the War on Poverty: The Impact of Food Stamps on Birth Outcomes . The Review of Economics and Statistics 93 ( 2 ): 387 – 403 . Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Celeux G. , Soromenho G. . 1996 . An Entropy Criterion for Assessing the Number of Clusters in a Mixture Model . Journal of Classification 13 : 195 – 212 . Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Coleman-Jensen A. , Rabbitt M. , Gregory C. , Singh A. . 2016 . 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Google Scholar CrossRef Search ADS Appendix Table 1 Descriptive Statistics of Data Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Appendix Table 1 Descriptive Statistics of Data Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Variable Explanation Mean SD Dependent variable Ratio SNAP spending in first 4 days ÷ total SNAP benefits in first 4 days 0.368 0.348 Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 0.233 0.424 Age Year 40.202 12.942 Work Yes = 1 0.356 0.48 racecat1 White = 1 0.687 0.465 racecat2 Black = 1 0.166 0.373 Highedu Higher education between household heads 19.444 2.923 Hhsize Household size 3.515 1.964 Kidsnum Number of household members (age < 18) 1.460 1.483 Oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) 0.239 0.519 Nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home 5.642 2.637 Nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home 6.667 5.289 Health lifestyle Tobacco Yes = 1 0.417 0.495 healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.209 0.408 healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) 0.166 0.373 dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes = 1) 0.718 0.451 Nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) 0.221 0.416 Nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) 0.227 0.42 Healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) 0.475 0.501 Food Security and Assistance Snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received 292.712 189.67 adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) 0.331 0.472 adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) 0.233 0.424 foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) 0.098 0.298 Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes 11.706 7.964 grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) 0.660 0.475 primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) 0.148 0.356 primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) 0.130 0.337 primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) 0.167 0.374 primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) 0.198 0.399 primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) 0.049 0.217 primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) 0.469 0.501 primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) 0.105 0.307 shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) 0.393 0.49 shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) 0.282 0.451 shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) 0.061 0.241 shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) 0.043 0.203 shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) 0.650 0.478 shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) 0.215 0.412 Financial Situation Ownhousing Household owns residential unit 0.282 0.451 Billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) 0.699 0.46 Finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) 0.178 0.384 liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) 0.074 0.262 Observations 163 Appendix Table 2 Specific Coding of Variables from Original Dataset Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Appendix Table 2 Specific Coding of Variables from Original Dataset Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Variable Explanation Original dataset Dependent variable ratio Percentage of SNAP expenditure over total SNAP benefits in the first 3 days Family and Personal Characteristics Sex Gender: male = 1 and female = 0 female = 2 Age Year Same work Yes = 1 if INCAMOUNT1 (amount, earnings from work, individual) is positive, then work = 1 racecat1 White = 1 Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 1: white; Racecat = 2: black/African American Racecat = 3: American Indian or Alaska Native Racecat = 4: Asian Racecat = 5: Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander Racecat = 6: Other race Racecat = 7: multiple races racecat2 Black = 1 Racecat = 2: black/African American highedu Higher education between household heads Max(edu) as highedu where relation = 0, 1, 2 (which are respondent, spouse, unmarried partner, receptively) hhsize Household size kidsnum Number of household members (age ≤ 18) Count household members whose age is less than or equal to 18 oldersnum Number of household members (age > 60) Count household members whose age is greater than 18 nmealshome Number of times prepared food for dinner at home Same nmealstogether Number of times family ate dinner together, at home Same Health lifestyle tobacco Yes = 1 Same healthrate1 Health condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 1: excellent Healthstatus = 2: very good Healthstatus = 3: good Healthstatus = 4: fair Healthstatus = 5: poor healthrate2 Health condition is good (Yes = 1) Healthstatus = 2: very good+ Healthstatus = 3: good dietrate1 Diet condition is excellent (Yes = 1) Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 1: excellent Dietstatuspr = 2: very good Dietstatuspr = 3: good Dietstatuspr = 4: fair Dietstatuspr = 5: poor dietrate2 Diet condition is good (Yes=1) Dietstatuspr = 2: very good+ Dietstatuspr = 3: good nutritionfact Always use nutrition facts (Yes = 1) Nutritionfacts = 1: always+ Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 1: always Nutritionfacts = 2: most of the time Nutritionfacts = 3: sometimes Nutritionfacts = 4: rarely Nutritionfacts = 5: never Nutritionfacts = 6: never seen nutritionsearch searched internet for nutrition information (Yes = 1) Same healthycost It costs too much to eat healthy foods (Yes = 1) Same Food Security and Assistance snaplastamt Reported amount of SNAP benefits last received Same adltfscat1 High food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 1: high food security ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security ADLTFSCAT = 4: very low food security adltfscat2 Marginal food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 2: marginal food security adltfscat3 Low food security (Yes = 1) ADLTFSCAT = 3: low food security foodpantry Household went to a food bank or food pantry in past 30 days for groceries (Yes = 1) Same Food Shopping primstoretraveltime One-way travel time to primary food store, in minutes Same grocerylistfrequency respondent always or very often shops with a grocery list (Yes = 1) Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time+ Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always Grocerylistfreq = 1: never Grocerylistfreq = 2: seldom Grocerylistfreq = 3: sometimes Grocerylistfreq = 4: most of the time Grocerylistfreq = 5: almost always primstoreprices Shop at primary store b/c has low prices/good value (Yes = 1) Same primstoreproduce Shop at primary store b/c has good produce selection (Yes = 1) Same primstoremeat Shop at primary store b/c has a good meat department (Yes = 1) Same primstorequality Shop at primary store b/c has good quality food (Yes = 1) Same primstorevariety Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of general foods (Yes = 1) Same primstorespecial Shop at primary store b/c has good variety of special foods (Yes = 1) Same primstoreclose Shop at primary store b/c is close to home (Yes = 1) Same primstoreloyalty Shop at primary store for loyalty card program (Yes = 1) Same shopplace1 Household shopped for food at a convenience store (Yes = 1) Shopconv Dummy: Shopconv Shopbigbox Shopclub Shopdollar Shopbakery Shopmeatfish Shopvegstand shopanyother shopplace2 Household shopped for food at a discount or big box store or wholesale club (Yes = 1) Shopbigbox+Shopclub shopplace3 Household shopped for food at a dollar store (Yes = 1) Shopdollar shopplace4 Household shopped for food at a bakery or meat or fish market or produce store or vegetable stand (Yes = 1) Shopbakery+Shopmeatfish+Shopvegstand shopmeans1 Usual means of getting to primary food store: own car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 1: drive own car Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Primstoretravelmode = 1: walk Primstoretravelmode = 1: bus Primstoretravelmode = 1: taxi Primstoretravelmode = 1: ride bicycle shopmeans2 Usual means of getting to primary food store: others’ car (Yes = 1) Primstoretravelmode = 2: use someone else’s car Primstoretravelmode = 1: someone else drives me Financial Situation ownhousing Household owns residential unit Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 1: rent Housingown = 2: own Housingown = 3other billsontime Household always or often pays bills on time (Yes = 1) Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always Billsontimefreq = 1: never Billsontimefreq = 2: rarely Billsontimefreq = 3: sometimes Billsontimefreq = 4: usually Billsontimefreq = 5: always finccondition Household’s reported financial condition is comfortable and secure (Yes = 1) Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 1: very comfortable and secure Fincondition = 2: able to make ends meet without much difficulty Fincondition = 3: occasionally have some difficulty making ends meet Fincondition = 4: tough to make ends meet but keeping your head above walter Fincondition = 5: in over your head liqassets2000 Household has $2,000 or more in liquid assets (Yes = 1) Same Appendix Table 3 Logit Coefficient Estimates for Group Selection Prediction Model VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 Note: Robust standard errors in parentheses. Asterisks indicate the following: *** = p < 0.01, **= p < 0.05, and *= p < 0.1. Appendix Table 3 Logit Coefficient Estimates for Group Selection Prediction Model VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 VARIABLES Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 gender −0.599 −0.575 −0.564 −0.695 (0.437) (0.452) (0.529) (0.657) age 0.0109 0.00893 0.0178 0.0345 (0.0146) (0.0151) (0.0202) (0.0316) worknot −0.305 −0.438 −0.187 −0.307 (0.354) (0.377) (0.438) (0.562) racecat1 0.918* 0.951* 0.515 0.523 (0.541) (0.559) (0.678) (0.808) racecat2 0.858 0.865 0.978 1.211 (0.639) (0.644) (0.757) (0.991) highedu 0.00230 0.0184 0.0282 0.162 (0.0633) (0.0663) (0.0774) (0.107) hhsize 0.166 0.153 0.169 −0.0239 (0.149) (0.148) (0.165) (0.254) kidsnum −0.0273 0.0871 0.133 0.343 (0.208) (0.238) (0.249) (0.342) oldersnum −0.124 −0.216 −0.385 −0.511 (0.376) (0.398) (0.425) (0.663) nmealstogether 0.0470 0.0747 (0.0391) (0.0630) nmealshome 0.0736 (0.138) tobacco −0.257 −0.132 0.282 (0.359) (0.422) (0.544) healthrate1 0.875 (1.031) healthrate2 0.947 (0.985) dietrate1 −1.872* −1.476 (1.072) (1.344) dietrate2 −0.198 0.815 (0.703) (0.826) Nutritionfact 0.0996 (0.638) nutritionsearch 0.150 (0.643) Healthycost −0.873 (0.661) Snaplastamt −0.00118 −0.000942 −0.00179 (0.00117) (0.00114) (0.00150) ADLTFSCAT1 −0.650 (0.730) ADLTFSCAT2 0.186 (0.689) ADLTFSCAT3 0.898 (0.815) Foodpantry −0.864 (1.301) primstoretraveltime 0.0255 0.0351 0.0255 (0.0228) (0.0278) (0.0362) grocerylistfrequency 0.743* 1.007* (0.429) (0.556) primstoreprices 0.539 (0.599) primstoreproduce 1.788** (0.777) primstoremeat −1.926** (0.829) primstorequality 0.749 (0.704) primstorevariety −1.942*** (0.744) primstorespecial −0.443 (1.082) primstoreclose −0.492 (0.553) primstoreloyalty −0.592 (0.789) shopplace1 0.373 (0.687) shopplace2 0.622 (0.740) shopmeans1 −0.243 (1.066) shopmeans2 −0.504 (1.210) Ownhousing 0.604 (0.542) Billsontime −0.230 −0.311 −0.618 (0.382) (0.411) (0.580) finccondition 0.861 (0.745) liqassets2000 −0.342 (0.942) Constant −2.001 −2.007 −2.955* −7.850** (1.394) (1.525) (1.768) (3.178) Pseudo R-squared 0.041 0.055 0.1223 0.280 Observations 162 162 137 135 Note: Robust standard errors in parentheses. Asterisks indicate the following: *** = p < 0.01, **= p < 0.05, and *= p < 0.1. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association 2018. This work is written by US Government employees and is in the public domain in the US. This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices)

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Applied Economic Perspectives and PolicyOxford University Press

Published: May 30, 2018

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