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Being Born Under Adverse Economic Conditions Leads to a Higher Cardiovascular Mortality Rate Later in Life: Evidence Based on Individuals Born at Different Stages of the Business Cycle

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Author Info

  • van den Berg, Gerard J.

    ()
    (University of Mannheim)

  • Doblhammer, Gabriele

    ()
    (University of Rostock)

  • Christensen, Kaare

    ()
    (University of Southern Denmark)

Abstract

We connect the recent medical and economic literatures on the long-run effects of early-life conditions, by analyzing the effects of economic conditions on the individual cardiovascular (CV) mortality rate later in life, using individual data records from the Danish Twin Registry covering births since the 1870s and including the cause of death. To capture exogenous variation of conditions early in life we use the state of the business cycle around birth. We find a significant negative effect of economic conditions early in life on the individual CV mortality rate at higher ages. There is no effect on the cancer-specific mortality rate. From variation within and between monozygotic and dizygotic twin pairs born under different conditions we conclude that the fate of an individual is more strongly determined by genetic and household-environmental factors if early-life conditions are poor. Individual-specific qualities come more to fruition if the starting position in life is better.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3635.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3635

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Keywords: longevity; genetic determinants; health; recession; life expectancy; cardiovascular disease; cancer; lifetimes; fetal programming; cause of death; developmental origins;

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References

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  1. Anne Case & Darren Lubotsky & Christina Paxson, 2002. "Economic status and health in childhood: the origins of the gradient," Working Papers, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing. 262, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing..
  2. Anne Case & Angela Fertig & Christina Paxson, 2004. "The Lasting Impact of Childhood Health and Circumstance," Working Papers, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing. 246, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing..
  3. Christopher J. Ruhm, 1996. "Are Recessions Good For Your Health?," NBER Working Papers 5570, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ingrid Henriksen & Kevin H. O'Rourke, 2003. "Incentives, Technology and the Shift to Year-Round Dairying in Late 19th Century Denmark," Trinity Economics Papers, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics 200311, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
  5. Sandra E. Black & Paul Devereux & Kjell Salvanes, 2006. "From the Cradle to the Labor Market? The Effect of Birth Weight on Adult Outcomes," CEE Discussion Papers, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE 0061, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  6. Gerard J. van den Berg & Maarten Lindeboom & France Portrait, 2006. "Economic Conditions Early in Life and Individual Mortality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 290-302, March.
  7. van den Berg, Gerard J. & Lindeboom, Maarten & Lopez, Marta, 2009. "Inequality in individual mortality and economic conditions earlier in life," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 69(9), pages 1360-1367, November.
  8. Fogel, Robert William, 1993. "New findings on secular trends in nutrition and mortality: Some implications for population theory," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, Elsevier, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 433-481 Elsevier.
  9. Van den Berg, Gerard J., 2001. "Duration models: specification, identification and multiple durations," Handbook of Econometrics, Elsevier, in: J.J. Heckman & E.E. Leamer (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 55, pages 3381-3460 Elsevier.
  10. Ingrid Henriksen & Kevin H. O'Rourke, 2005. "Incentives, technology and the shift to year-round dairying in late nineteenth-century Denmark -super-1 ," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, Economic History Society, vol. 58(3), pages 520-554, 08.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Gary Yeung & Gerard Berg & Maarten Lindeboom & France Portrait, 2014. "The impact of early-life economic conditionson cause-specific mortality during adulthood," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 27(3), pages 895-919, July.
  2. Gerard J. vandenBerg & Dorly J.H. Deeg & Maarten Lindeboom & France Portrait, 2010. "The Role of Early-Life Conditions in the Cognitive Decline due to Adverse Events Later in Life," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(548), pages F411-F428, November.
  3. Sonia Bhalotra & Sam Rawlings, 2010. "Intergenerational persistence in health in developing countries: the penalty of gender inequality," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK 10/249, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  4. Flavio Cunha & James J. Heckman, 2009. "The Economics and Psychology of Inequality and Human DEvelopment," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 320-364, 04-05.
  5. Schaan, Barbara, 2014. "The interaction of family background and personal education on depressive symptoms in later life," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 94-102.
  6. Mikko Myrskylä, 2010. "The effects of shocks in early life mortality on later life expectancy and mortality compression: A cohort analysis," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 22(12), pages 289-320, March.
  7. Brandt, Martina & Deindl, Christian & Hank, Karsten, 2012. "Tracing the origins of successful aging: The role of childhood conditions and social inequality in explaining later life health," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 74(9), pages 1418-1425.
  8. Adam Isen & Maya Rossin-Slater & W. Reed Walker, 2013. "Every Breath You Take, Every Dollar You'll Make: The Long-Term Consequences of the Clean Air Act of 1970," Working Papers 13-52, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  9. Gagnon, Alain & Bohnert, Nora, 2012. "Early life socioeconomic conditions in rural areas and old-age mortality in twentieth-century Quebec," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 75(8), pages 1497-1504.

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