IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hal/wpaper/halshs-02872212.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Age U-shape in Europe: The Protective Role of Partnership

Author

Listed:
  • Andrew E. Clark

    (PSE - Paris School of Economics)

  • Hippolyte d'Albis

    () (PSE - Paris School of Economics)

  • Angela Greulich

    () (OSC - Observatoire sociologique du changement - Sciences Po - Sciences Po - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

Abstract

We here ask whether the U-shaped relationship between life satisfaction and age is flatter for those who are partnered. This is the case in cross-section EU-SILC data, where the drop in life satisfaction from the teens to the 50s is almost four times larger for the non-partnered than for the partnered, whose life satisfaction essentially follows a slight downward trajectory with age. However, the same analysis in three panel datasets (BHPS, SOEP and HILDA) reveals a U-shape for both marital groups, although still somewhat flatter for the partnered than for the non-partnered. We suggest that the difference between the cross-section and panel results reflects compositional effects: there is in particular a significant shift of the relatively dissatisfied out of marriage in mid-life. These composition effects will flatten the U-shape in age for the partnered in cross-section data.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew E. Clark & Hippolyte d'Albis & Angela Greulich, 2020. "The Age U-shape in Europe: The Protective Role of Partnership," Working Papers halshs-02872212, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-02872212
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-02872212
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-02872212/document
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Terence C. Cheng & Nattavudh Powdthavee & Andrew J. Oswald, 2017. "Longitudinal Evidence for a Midlife Nadir in Human Well‐being: Results from Four Data Sets," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 127(599), pages 126-142, February.
    2. Øystein Kravdal & Emily Grundy & Katherine Keenan, 2018. "The increasing mortality advantage of the married: The role played by education," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 38(20), pages 471-512.
    3. Ed Diener, 2006. "Guidelines for National Indicators of Subjective Well-Being and Ill-Being," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 7(4), pages 397-404, November.
    4. Stutzer, Alois & Frey, Bruno S., 2006. "Does marriage make people happy, or do happy people get married?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 326-347, April.
    5. Andrew E. Clark & Sarah Flèche & Claudia Senik, 2016. "Economic Growth Evens Out Happiness: Evidence from Six Surveys," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 62(3), pages 405-419, September.
    6. Clark, Andrew E., 2007. "Born To Be Mild? Cohort Effects Don’t (Fully) Explain Why Well-Being Is U-Shaped in Age," IZA Discussion Papers 3170, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Andrew E. Clark & Sarah Flèche & Claudia Senik, 2016. "Economic Growth Evens Out Happiness: Evidence from Six Surveys," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 62(3), pages 405-419, September.
    8. David G. Blanchflower, 2020. "Unhappiness and age," NBER Working Papers 26642, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Blanchflower, David G. & Clark, Andrew E., 2020. "Children, Unhappiness and Family Finances," GLO Discussion Paper Series 561, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    10. Kassenboehmer, Sonja C. & Haisken-DeNew, John P., 2012. "Heresy or enlightenment? The well-being age U-shape effect is flat," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(1), pages 235-238.
    11. Andrew E. Clark & Sarah Flèche & Claudia Senik, 2016. "Economic Growth Evens Out Happiness: Evidence from Six Surveys," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 62(3), pages 405-419, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Age U-shape; Subjective Well-being; Marriage; EU-SILC;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:wpaper:halshs-02872212. 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 RePEc Author Service 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.