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The Quantity-Adjusted Value of Life

  • Moore, Michael J
  • Viscusi, W Kip

The traditional compensating differential analysis is extended to r eflect the effects on wages of the duration of life at risk and of insurance benefits to the surviving spouse and dependents. The implicit discount rate that workers use in making their life-cycle employment decisions is also estimated. The revealed discount rate ranges from 10 to 12 percent, and the implicit value per year of life is $175,000. There is also evidence of significant wage reductions resulting from higher workers' compensation benefits for fatal and nonfatal injuries, suggesting an important trade-off between ex ante and ex post compensation for risk. Copyright 1988 by Oxford University Press.

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Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

Volume (Year): 26 (1988)
Issue (Month): 3 (July)
Pages: 369-88

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Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:26:y:1988:i:3:p:369-88
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