Economic Conditions at Birth, Birth Weight, Ability, and the Causal Path to Cardiovascular Mortality
AbstractWe analyze interaction effects of birth weight and the business cycle at birth on individual cardiovascular (CV) mortality later in life. In addition, we examine to what extent these long-run effects run by way of cognitive ability and education and to what extent those mitigate the long-run effects. We use individual records of Swedish birth cohorts from 1915–1929 covering birth weight, family characteristics, school grades, sibling identifiers, and outcomes later in life including the death cause. The birth weight distribution does not vary over the business cycle. The association between birth weight (across the full range) and CV mortality rate later in life is significantly stronger if the individual is born in a recession. This is not explained by differential fertility by social class over the cycle. Ability itself, as measured at age 10, varies with birth weight and the cycle at birth. But the long-run effects of early-life conditions appear to mostly reflect direct biological mechanisms. We do not find evidence of indirect pathways through ability or education, and the long-run effects are not mitigated by education.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7605.
Length: 56 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2013
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
- I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Production
- I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
- I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
- J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
- J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
- N34 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: 1913-
- C41 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Duration Analysis; Optimal Timing Strategies
- E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-09-28 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEM-2013-09-28 (Demographic Economics)
- NEP-EDU-2013-09-28 (Education)
- NEP-HEA-2013-09-28 (Health Economics)
- NEP-LTV-2013-09-28 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
- NEP-MAC-2013-09-28 (Macroeconomics)
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