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Uncertain Health and Survival: Effects on End-of-Life Consumption

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  • Lillard, Lee A
  • Weiss, Yoram

Abstract

This paper analyzes the impact of health and survival uncertainty on the saving and consumption decisions of retirees. A dynamic programming approach is used to model the household's planning problem. The utility parameters are estimated using panel data. The authors find that a fall into poor health raises the marginal utility from consumption. Simulations are used to indicate the effects of falling into poor health and loss of spouse. They reveal a large transfer from the health to the sick partner and a strong dependence of saving on the survivor benefits, suggesting that concern about the surviving spouse is an important motive for saving.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Statistical Association in its journal Journal of Business and Economic Statistics.

Volume (Year): 15 (1997)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 254-68

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Handle: RePEc:bes:jnlbes:v:15:y:1997:i:2:p:254-68

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Cited by:
  1. Finkelstein, Amy & Luttmer, Erzo F.P. & Notowidigdo, Matthew J., 2009. "Approaches to Estimating the Health State Dependence of the Utility Function," IZA Discussion Papers 3925, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Angela Lyons & Hyungsoo Kim, 2007. "No Pain, No Strain: Impact of Health on the Financial Security of Older Americans," NFI Working Papers 2007-WP-12, Indiana State University, Scott College of Business, Networks Financial Institute.
  3. Mariacristina De Nardi & Eric French & John Bailey Jones, 2006. "Differential Mortality, Uncertain Medical Expenses, and the Saving of Elderly Singles," NBER Working Papers 12554, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Smith, V. Kerry & Van Houtven, George, 1998. "Non-Market Valuation and the Household," Discussion Papers dp-98-31, Resources For the Future.
  5. Levy, Moshe & Nir, Adi Rizansky, 2012. "The utility of health and wealth," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 379-392.
  6. Moshe Levy & Adi Rizansky, 2014. "Market failure in the pharmaceutical industry and how it can be overcome: the CureShare mechanism," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 143-156, March.
  7. Dahal, Arati & Fertig, Angela, 2013. "An econometric assessment of the effect of mental illness on household spending behavior," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 18-33.
  8. Jennifer Ward-Batts, 2001. "Health, Wealth and Gender: Do Health Shocks of Husbands and Wives Have Different Impacts on Household Wealth?," Working Papers wp016, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  9. Mehmet Ulubasoglu & Nejat Anbarci, 2005. "Intersectoral Size Differences and Migration: Kuznets Revisited," Economics Series 2005_16, Deakin University, Faculty of Business and Law, School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
  10. Aydogan Ulker, 2008. "Wealth Holdings and Portfolio Allocation of the Elderly: The Role of Marital History," Economics Series 2008_16, Deakin University, Faculty of Business and Law, School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
  11. Brighita Negrusa & Sonia Oreffice, 2010. "Sexual orientation and household savings: do homosexual couples save more?," Working Papers. Serie AD 2010-21, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Econ├│micas, S.A. (Ivie).
  12. James P. Smith, 1999. "Healthy Bodies and Thick Wallets: The Dual Relation between Health and Economic Status," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(2), pages 145-166, Spring.
  13. James P. Smith, 2004. "New Directions in Socioeconomic Research on Aging," Labor and Demography 0403016, EconWPA.
  14. Maude Toussaint-Comeau & Jonathan Hartley, 2009. "Health and the savings of insured versus uninsured, working-age households in the U.S," Working Paper Series WP-09-23, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  15. Domeij David & Johannesson Magnus, 2006. "Consumption and Health," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-30, May.

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