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Parental income and child health in Germany

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  • Steffen Reinhold
  • Hendrik Jürges

Abstract

We use newly available data from Germany to study the relationship between parental income and child health. We find a strong gradient between parental income and subjective child health as has been documented earlier in the US, Canada and the UK. The relationship in Germany is about as strong in the US and stronger than in the UK. However, in contrast to US results, we do not find that the disadvantages associated with low parental income accumulate as the child ages, nor that children from low socioeconomic background are more likely to suffer from ‘objectively measured’ health problems – except for obesity. There is some evidence, however, that high income children are better able to cope with the adverse consequences of chronic conditions. Finally, we do not find that child health (except for low birth weight) plays a major role in the explanation of educational attainment once parental income and education are controlled for.
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Suggested Citation

  • Steffen Reinhold & Hendrik Jürges, 2012. "Parental income and child health in Germany," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(5), pages 562-579, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:21:y:2012:i:5:p:562-579
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    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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