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Uncertain Longevity and Investment in Education

  • Eytan Sheshinski

It has been argued that increased life expectancy raises the rate of return on education, causing a rise in the investment in education followed by an increase in lifetime labor supply. Empirical evidence of these relations is rather weak. Building on a lifecycle model with uncertain longevity, this paper shows that increased life expectancy does not suffice to warrant the above hypotheses. We provide assumptions about the change in survival probabilities, specifically about the age dependence of hazard rates, which determine individuals’ behavioral response w.r.t. education, work and age of retirement. Comparison is made between the case when individuals have access to a competitive annuity market and the case of no insurance.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2784.

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Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2784
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  1. Peter J. Klenow & Mark Bils, 2000. "Does Schooling Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1160-1183, December.
  2. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson, 2006. "Disease and Development: The Effect of Life Expectancy on Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 12269, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Peter Lorentzen & John McMillan & Romain Wacziarg, 2006. "Death and Development," 2006 Meeting Papers 61, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Galor, Oded & Weil, David, 1999. "From Malthusian Stagnation to Modern Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 2082, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. repec:oup:qjecon:v:114:y:1999:i:1:p:83-116 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Ananth Seshadri & Rodolfo Manuelli, 2005. "Human Capital and the Wealth of Nations," 2005 Meeting Papers 56, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  7. Moshe Hazan, 2009. "Longevity and Lifetime Labor Supply: Evidence and Implications," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(6), pages 1829-1863, November.
  8. Yoram Ben-Porath, 1967. "The Production of Human Capital and the Life Cycle of Earnings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 352.
  9. Eytan Sheshinski, 2007. "The Economic Theory of Annuities," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 8536.
  10. Cervellati, Matteo & Sunde, Uwe, 2002. "Human Capital Formation, Life Expectancy and the Process of Economic Development," IZA Discussion Papers 585, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Cervellati, Matteo & Sunde, Uwe, 2005. "Human capital formation, life expectancy, and the process of development," Munich Reprints in Economics 20083, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  12. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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