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Life expectancy and old age savings

  • Mariacristina De Nardi
  • Eric French
  • John Bailey Jones

Rich people, women, and healthy people live longer. We document that this heterogeneity in life expectancy is large. We use an estimated structural model to assess the impact of life expectancy variation on the elderly’s savings. We find that the differences in life expectancy related to observable factors such as health, gender, and income have large effects on savings, and that these factors contribute by similar amounts. We also show that the risk of outliving one’s expected lifespan has a large effect on the elderly’s saving behavior.

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File URL: http://www.chicagofed.org/digital_assets/publications/working_papers/2008/wp2008_18.pdf
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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in its series Working Paper Series with number WP-08-18.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedhwp:wp-08-18
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  1. Karen E. Dynan & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 2004. "Do the Rich Save More?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 397-444, April.
  2. Angus Deaton, 1989. "Saving and Liquidity Constraints," NBER Working Papers 3196, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Mariacristina De Nardi & Eric French & John Bailey Jones, 2006. "Differential Mortality, Uncertain Medical Expenses, and the Saving of Elderly Singles," NBER Working Papers 12554, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Eric French & John Bailey Jones, 2004. "On the distribution and dynamics of health care costs," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(6), pages 705-721.
  5. Michael Hurd & Daniel McFadden & Angela Merrill, 1999. "Predictors of Mortality Among the Elderly," NBER Working Papers 7440, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Li Gan & Guan Gong, 2005. "Subjective Morality Risks and Bequests," 2005 Meeting Papers 900, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  7. R. Glenn Hubbard & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 1993. "The Importance of Precautionary Motives in Explaining Individual and Aggregate Saving," NBER Working Papers 4516, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Feenberg, Daniel & Skinner, Jonathan, 1994. "The Risk and Duration of Catastrophic Health Care Expenditures," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(4), pages 633-47, November.
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