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Young Baby Boomers' Wealth


  • Zagorsky, Jay L


Researchers know relatively little about the beginnings of wealth accumulation. This paper analyzes the wealth of young baby boomers, individuals born from 1957 to 1964, using a previously ignored wealth data set, the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79). First, a detailed data quality evaluation is performed. Findings suggest that not cleaning NLSY79 wealth data causes nonsensical results, but there are no other serious problems. Analyzing the cleaned wealth data quantifies many stylized facts. For example, the typical baby boomer's wealth holdings increase by more than S2,000 a year. Married females hold more wealth than either married or unmarried males. Finally, while young boomers start with a majority of their wealth in illiquid holdings such as automobiles and possessions, they rapidly shift their wealth holdings into homes as they grow older. Copyright 1999 by The International Association for Research in Income and Wealth.

Suggested Citation

  • Zagorsky, Jay L, 1999. "Young Baby Boomers' Wealth," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 45(2), pages 135-156, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:45:y:1999:i:2:p:135-56

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Eric M. Engen & William G. Gale & John Karl Scholz, 1994. "Do Saving Incentives Work?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(1), pages 85-180.
    2. Lupton, J. & Smith, J.P., 1999. "Marriage, Assets, and Savings," Papers 99-12, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jonas D. M. Fisher & Martin Gervais, 2011. "Why Has Home Ownership Fallen Among The Young?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 52(3), pages 883-912, August.
    2. GRABKA Markus & MARCUS Jan & SIERMINSKA Eva, 2013. "Wealth distribution within couples and financial decision making," LISER Working Paper Series 2013-02, LISER.
    3. Jonas D. M. Fisher & Martin Gervais, 2007. "First-time home buyers and residential investment volatility," Working Paper Series WP-07-15, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    4. Engelhardt, Gary V., 2003. "Nominal loss aversion, housing equity constraints, and household mobility: evidence from the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 171-195, January.
    5. repec:kap:iaecre:v:17:y:2011:i:2:p:211-223 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Grabka, Markus M. & Marcus, Jan & Sierminska, Eva, 2015. "Wealth Distribution within Couples," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 459-486.
    7. Gervais, Martin & Fisher, Jonas, 2009. "Why has home ownership fallen among the young?," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0907, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    8. Sierminska, Eva & Frick, Joachim R. & Grabka, Markus M., 2008. "Examining the Gender Wealth Gap in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 3573, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Lisa A. Keister, 2000. "Family Structure, Race, and Wealth Ownership: A Longitudinal Exploration of Wealth Accumulation Processes," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_304, Levy Economics Institute.
    10. Annamaria Lusardi & Ricardo Cossa & Erin L. Krupka, 2001. "Savings of Young Parents," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(4), pages 762-794.
    11. Maury Gittleman, 2011. "Medicaid and Wealth: An Examination Using the NLSY79," Working Papers 448, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
    12. Zagorsky, Jay L., 2005. "Health and wealth: The late-20th century obesity epidemic in the U.S," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 296-313, July.
    13. Swarnankur Chatterjee, 2009. "Health insurance coverage and the role of income uncertainty," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 29(2), pages 1246-1254.
    14. Lisa A. Keister, 2000. "Family Structure, Race, and Wealth Ownership: A Longitudinal Exploration of Wealth Accumulation Processes," Macroeconomics 0004051, EconWPA.
    15. Jay Zagorsky, 2013. "Do People Save or Spend Their Inheritances? Understanding What Happens to Inherited Wealth," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 64-76, March.
    16. Benjamin J. Keys, 2010. "The credit market consequences of job displacement," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2010-24, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    17. Tim S. Griesdorn & Dorothy B. Durband, 2016. "Does Self-control Predict Wealth Creation Among Young Baby Boomers?," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 37(1), pages 18-28, March.
    18. Bucks, Brian K. & Pence, Karen M., 2015. "Wealth, Pensions, Debt, and Savings: Considerations for a Panel Survey," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2015-19, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    19. Loke, Vernon, 2013. "Parental asset accumulation trajectories and children's college outcomes," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 124-133.
    20. Robert W. Fairlie, 2002. "Drug Dealing and Legitimate Self-Employment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(3), pages 538-567, July.
    21. Galizzi, Monica & Zagorsky, Jay L., 2009. "How do on-the-job injuries and illnesses impact wealth?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 26-36, January.
    22. Gary Engelhardt, 2001. "Nominal Loss Aversion, Housing Equity Constraints, and Household Mobility: Evidence from the United States," Center for Policy Research Working Papers 42, Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University.
    23. Zagorsky, Jay L., 2003. "Husbands' and wives' view of the family finances," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 127-146, May.
    24. Swarnankur Chatterjee & Velma Zahirovic-Herbert, 2011. "Homeownership and Housing Equity: An Examination of Native- Immigrant Differences in Housing Wealth," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 17(2), pages 211-223, May.

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