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Do More of Those in Misery Suffer from Poverty, Unemployment or Mental Illness?

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  • Sarah Flèche
  • Richard Layard

Abstract

Studies of deprivation usually ignore mental illness. This paper uses household panel data from the USA, Australia, Britain and Germany to broaden the analysis. We ask first how many of those in the lowest levels of life-satisfaction suffer from unemployment, poverty, physical ill health, and mental illness. The largest proportion suffer from mental illness. Multiple regression shows that mental illness is not highly correlated with poverty or unemployment, and that it contributes more to explaining the presence of misery than is explained by either poverty or unemployment. This holds both with and without fixed effects.
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Suggested Citation

  • Sarah Flèche & Richard Layard, 2017. "Do More of Those in Misery Suffer from Poverty, Unemployment or Mental Illness?," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(1), pages 27-41, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:70:y:2017:i:1:p:27-41
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/kykl.12129
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Bruce Headey & Jonathan Kelley & Alex Wearing, 1993. "Dimensions of mental health: Life satisfaction, positive affect, anxiety and depression," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 63-82, May.
    2. Paul Dolan & Daniel Kahneman, 2008. "Interpretations Of Utility And Their Implications For The Valuation Of Health," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(525), pages 215-234, January.
    3. Mukuria, Clara & Brazier, John, 2013. "Valuing the EQ-5D and the SF-6D health states using subjective well-being: A secondary analysis of patient data," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 97-105.
    4. Christopher Boyce & Alex Wood & Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2013. "Is Personality Fixed? Personality Changes as Much as “Variable” Economic Factors and More Strongly Predicts Changes to Life Satisfaction," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 111(1), pages 287-305, March.
    5. Gert G. Wagner & Joachim R. Frick & Jürgen Schupp, 2007. "The German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) – Scope, Evolution and Enhancements," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 127(1), pages 139-169.
    6. Carol Graham & Lucas Higuera & Eduardo Lora, 2011. "Which health conditions cause the most unhappiness?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(12), pages 1431-1447, December.
    7. repec:idb:brikps:4998 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Carol Graham & Lucas Higuera & Eduardo Lora, 2009. "Valuing Health Conditions - Insights from Happiness Surveys across Countries and Cultures," Research Department Publications 4635, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    9. Helliwell, John & Layard, Richard & Sachs, Jeffrey, 2012. "World happiness report," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 47487, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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    Cited by:

    1. Andrew E. Clark & Tom Lee, 2017. "Early-life correlates of later-life well-being: Evidence from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study," PSE Working Papers halshs-01570052, HAL.
    2. Strulik, Holger, 2018. "An economic heory of depression and its impact on health behavior and longevity," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 337, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty

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