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Alcohol consumption and liver cirrhosis mortality: New evidence from a panel data analysis for sixteen European countries


  • Bentzen, Jan

    () (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business)

  • Smith, Valdemar

    () (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business)


Empirical evidence gives strong support to a close association between liver cirrhosis mortality and the intake of alcohol and most often a log-linear relationship is assumed in the econometric modeling. The present analysis investigates for unit roots in a panel data set for sixteen European countries – covering the period 1970-2006 - where both alcohol consumption and liver cirrhosis seem best described as trend-stationary variables. Therefore a fixed effects model including individual trends is applied in the analysis but also a more flexible non-linear functional form with fewer restrictions on the relationship between liver cirrhosis mortality and alcohol consumption is included. The conclusion is that the total level of alcohol consumption as well as the specific beverages – beer, wine and spirits – contributes to liver cirrhosis mortality, but the present study also reveals that directly addressing the question of panel unit roots and in this case subsequently applying a trend-stationary modeling methodology reduces the estimates of the impacts from alcohol consumption to liver cirrhosis. Finally, more restrictive alcohol policies seem to have positively influenced the country-specific development in cirrhosis mortality.

Suggested Citation

  • Bentzen, Jan & Smith, Valdemar, 2010. "Alcohol consumption and liver cirrhosis mortality: New evidence from a panel data analysis for sixteen European countries," Working Papers 10-9, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:aareco:2010_009

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ben-David, Dan & Papell, David H., 1997. "International trade and structural change," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(3-4), pages 513-523, November.
    2. Ben-David, Dan, 2001. "Trade liberalization and income convergence: a comment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 229-234, October.
    3. Ben-David, Dan & Papell, David H., 1995. "The great wars, the great crash, and steady state growth: Some new evidence about an old stylized fact," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 453-475, December.
    4. Ben-David, Dan, 1996. "Trade and convergence among countries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-4), pages 279-298, May.
    5. Dan Ben-David, 1993. "Equalizing Exchange: Trade Liberalization and Income Convergence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 653-679.
    6. Gil-Pareja, Salvador & Llorca-Vivero, Rafael & Martinez-Serrano, Jose Antonio, 2007. "Did the European exchange-rate mechanism contribute to the integration of peripheral countries?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 303-308, May.
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    More about this item


    Alcohol consumption; Liver cirrhosis mortality; Trend-stationary panel data; Non-linear modelling;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General

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