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Altruism and the Care of Elderly Parents: Evidence from Japanese Families

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  • Miki Kohara
  • Fumio Ohtake

Abstract

This paper analyzes what adult children would do for their parents were they frail and in need of long-term care. Focusing on the special case of parents' illness, the paper then investigates altruism in Japanese children. Descriptive statistics show that about 30% of adult children living separately from their parents provide long-term in-home care, which suggests that a significant number of Japanese children supply care. However, detailed examination reveals that this parental care is not motivated entirely by altruism. We show that children provide parental care when their parents are wealthy enough to meet the costs of nursing.

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File URL: http://www.iser.osaka-u.ac.jp/library/dp/2006/DP0670.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University in its series ISER Discussion Paper with number 0670.

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Date of creation: Aug 2006
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Handle: RePEc:dpr:wpaper:0670

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  1. Bernheim, B Douglas & Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H, 1985. "The Strategic Bequest Motive," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1045-76, December.
  2. Hoerger, Thomas J & Picone, Gabriel A & Sloan, Frank A, 1996. "Public Subsidies, Private Provision of Care and Living Arrangements of the Elderly," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(3), pages 428-40, August.
  3. Pezzin, Liliana E & Schone, Barbara Steinberg, 1997. "The Allocation of Resources in Intergenerational Households: Adult Children and Their Elderly Parents," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 460-64, May.
  4. Hayashi, Fumio, 1995. "Is the Japanese Extended Family Altruistically Linked? A Test Based on Engel Curves," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 661-74, June.
  5. Liliana E. Pezzin & Barbara Steinberg Schone, 1999. "Intergenerational Household Formation, Female Labor Supply and Informal Caregiving: A Bargaining Approach," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(3), pages 475-503.
  6. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1992. "Collective Labor Supply and Welfare," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 437-67, June.
  7. Lam, D. & Schoeni, R.F., 1993. "Private Interhousehold Transfers of Money and Time: New Empirical Evidence," Papers 93-26, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
  8. Cox, Donald & Rank, Mark R, 1992. "Inter-vivos Transfers and Intergenerational Exchange," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(2), pages 305-14, May.
  9. Cox, Donald, 1987. "Motives for Private Income Transfers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(3), pages 508-46, June.
  10. Ohtake, F., 1991. "Bequest Motives of Aged Households in Japan," ISER Discussion Paper 0249, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Aoki, Takaaki, 2008. "On the Implications of Two-way Altruism in Human-Capital-Based OLG Model," MPRA Paper 12492, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. John Ameriks & Andrew Caplin & Steven Laufer & Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh, 2007. "The Joy of Giving or Assisted Living? Using Strategic Surveys to Separate Bequest and Precautionary Motives," NBER Working Papers 13105, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Yukawa, Shiho, 2012. "女性の賃金が親への介護行動に与える影響
    [The Effect of Women's Wage on Elderly Care]
    ," MPRA Paper 35801, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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