IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hal/psewpa/halshs-00586247.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Optimal tax policy and expected longevity: A mean and variance utility approach

Author

Listed:
  • Marie-Louise Leroux

    (CORE - Center of Operation Research and Econometrics [Louvain] - UCL - Université Catholique de Louvain)

  • Grégory Ponthière

    (PSE - Paris School of Economics, PJSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

Abstract

This paper studies the normative problem of redistribution between agents who can infuence their survival probability through private health spending, but who differ in their attitude towards the risks involved in the lotteries of life to be chosen. For that purpose, a two-period model is developed, where agents' preferences on lotteries of life can be represented by a mean and variance utility function allowing, unlike the expected utility form, some sensitivity to what Allais (1953) calls the dispersion of psychological values. It is shown that if agents ignore the impact of their health spending on the return of their savings, the decentralization of the first-best utilitarian optimum requires intergroup lump-sum transfers and group-specifc taxes on health spending. Under asymmetric information, we find that subsidizing health expenditures may be optimal as a way to solve the incentive problem.

Suggested Citation

  • Marie-Louise Leroux & Grégory Ponthière, 2008. "Optimal tax policy and expected longevity: A mean and variance utility approach," PSE Working Papers halshs-00586247, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-00586247 Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00586247
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00586247/document
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Gary S. Becker & Tomas J. Philipson & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2005. "The Quantity and Quality of Life and the Evolution of World Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 277-291.
    2. repec:aph:ajpbhl:1987:77:3:307-312_7 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Tomas J. Philipson & Gary S. Becker, 1998. "Old-Age Longevity and Mortality-Contingent Claims," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(3), pages 551-573, June.
    4. Eytan Sheshinski, 2007. "Introduction to The Economic Theory of Annuities," Introductory Chapters,in: The Economic Theory of Annuities Princeton University Press.
    5. Antoine Bommier, 2006. "Uncertain Lifetime And Intertemporal Choice: Risk Aversion As A Rationale For Time Discounting," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1223-1246, November.
    6. LEROUX, Marie-Louise, 2008. "Endogenous differential mortality, non monitored effort and optimal non linear taxation," CORE Discussion Papers 2008029, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    7. Eytan Sheshinski, 2007. "The Economic Theory of Annuities," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 8536, June.
    8. Gary S. Becker & Tomas J. Philipson & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2005. "The Quantity and Quality of Life and the Evolution of World Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 277-291.
    9. Broome, John, 2006. "Weighing Lives," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199297702.
    10. Chris Starmer, 2000. "Developments in Non-expected Utility Theory: The Hunt for a Descriptive Theory of Choice under Risk," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 332-382.
    11. Frederick Mosteller & Philip Nogee, 1951. "An Experimental Measurement of Utility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59, pages 371-371.
    12. Broome, John, 2004. "Weighing Lives," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199243761.
    13. Loomes, Graham & Sugden, Robert, 1987. "Some implications of a more general form of regret theory," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 270-287, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. LEROUX, Marie-Louise & PESTIEAU, Pierre & PONTHIÈRE, Grégory, 2008. "Should we subsidize longevity?," CORE Discussion Papers 2008058, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    2. Marie-Louise Leroux & Grégory Ponthière, 2013. "Optimal prevention when coexistence matters," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, pages 1095-1127.
    3. Leroux, Marie-Louise & Pestieau, Pierre & Ponthière, Grégory, 2015. "Longévité différentielle et redistribution : enjeux théoriques et empiriques," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 91(4), pages 465-497, Décembre.
    4. Pierre Pestieau & Grégory Ponthière, 2012. "The public economics of increasing longevity," PSE Working Papers halshs-00676492, HAL.
    5. Pierre Pestieau & Gregory Ponthiere, 2012. "The Public Economics of Increasing Longevity," Hacienda Pública Española, IEF, pages 41-74.
    6. Leroux, Marie-Louise & Ponthiere, Gregory, 2013. "Utilitarianism and unequal longevities: A remedy?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 888-899.
    7. Pierre Pestieau & Grégory Ponthiere, 2012. "On the Policy Implications of Changing Longevity," CESifo Working Paper Series 3926, CESifo Group Munich.
    8. LEROUX, Marie - Louise & PONTHIERE, Grégory, 2009. "Wives, husbands and wheelchairs : Optimal tax policy under gender-specific health," CORE Discussion Papers 2009071, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    9. Marie-Louise Leroux & Grégory Ponthière, 2013. "Optimal prevention when coexistence matters," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, pages 1095-1127.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    longevity; risk; lotteries of life; non-expected utility theory; moments of utility theory; health spending; longévité; risque; loteries de vie; théorie de l'utilité non-attendue; théorie des moments de l'utilité; dépenses de santé;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-00586247. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (CCSD). General contact details of provider: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.