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Socioeconomic heterogeneity in the effect of health shocks on earnings: evidence from population-wide data on Swedish workers

Author

Listed:
  • Lundborg, Petter

    () (Lunds University)

  • Nilsson, Martin

    () (IFAU - Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation)

  • Vikström, Johan

    () (Institute for Labout Market Policy Evaluation)

Abstract

In this paper, we test for the existence of socioeconomic heterogeneity in the effect of health shocks on labor market outcomes using register data on the total population of Swedish workers. We estimate fixed effect models and use unexpected hospitalizations as a measure of health shocks. Our results suggest large heterogeneity in the effects, where low educated individuals suffer relatively more from a given health shock. This result holds across a wide range of different health shocks and our results suggest that the heterogeneity increases by age. We test several potential explanations to these results. Extensive sensitivity analyses, including a difference-in-differences matching model, show that our estimates are robust to a number of potential threats. We conclude that socioeconomic heterogeneity in the effect of health shocks offers one explanation to why the socioeconomic gradient in health widens during middle ages.

Suggested Citation

  • Lundborg, Petter & Nilsson, Martin & Vikström, Johan, 2011. "Socioeconomic heterogeneity in the effect of health shocks on earnings: evidence from population-wide data on Swedish workers," Working Paper Series 2011:11, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:2011_011
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Stewart, Jennifer M., 2001. "The impact of health status on the duration of unemployment spells and the implications for studies of the impact of unemployment on health status," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 781-796, September.
    2. Currie, Janet & Madrian, Brigitte C., 1999. "Health, health insurance and the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 50, pages 3309-3416 Elsevier.
    3. van Kippersluis, Hans & Van Ourti, Tom & O'Donnell, Owen & van Doorslaer, Eddy, 2009. "Health and income across the life cycle and generations in Europe," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 818-830, July.
    4. Fredriksson, Peter & Johansson, Per, 2008. "Dynamic Treatment Assignment," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 26, pages 435-445.
    5. Doreen Wing Han Au & Thomas F. Crossley & Martin Schellhorn, 2005. "The effect of health changes and long-term health on the work activity of older Canadians," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(10), pages 999-1018.
    6. Fabrice Etilé & Carine Milcent, 2006. "Income-related reporting heterogeneity in self-assessed health: evidence from France," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(9), pages 965-981.
    7. van Doorslaer, Eddy & Wagstaff, Adam & Bleichrodt, Han & Calonge, Samuel & Gerdtham, Ulf-G. & Gerfin, Michael & Geurts, Jose & Gross, Lorna & Hakkinen, Unto & Leu, Robert E., 1997. "Income-related inequalities in health: some international comparisons," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 93-112, February.
    8. Disney, Richard & Emmerson, Carl & Wakefield, Matthew, 2006. "Ill health and retirement in Britain: A panel data-based analysis," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 621-649, July.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Cervini-Plá, María & Vall-Castello, Judit, 2015. "The Earnings and Employment Losses Before Entering the Disability System," IZA Discussion Papers 8913, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Maria Cervini-Plá & Jose I. Silva & Judit Vall Castelló, 2016. "Estimating the income loss of disabled individuals: the case of Spain," Empirical Economics, Springer, pages 809-829.
    3. Elinder Mikael & Erixson Oscar & Ohlsson Henry, 2012. "The Impact of Inheritances on Heirs' Labor and Capital Income," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, pages 1-37.
    4. Erixson, Oscar, 2014. "Health responses to a wealth shock: Evidence from a Swedish tax reform," Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies 2014:3, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    5. Anton Nilsson, 2015. "Who suffers from unemployment? The role of health and skills," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-24, December.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Health; health shocks; socioeconomic status; life-cycle;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior

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