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Labour Force Participation of the Elderly in Europe: The Importance of Being Healthy

Author

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  • Kalwij, Adriaan

    () (Utrecht School of Economics)

  • Vermeulen, Frederic

    () (KU Leuven)

Abstract

In this paper we study labour force participation behaviour of individuals aged 50-64 in 11 European countries. The data are drawn from the new Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). The empirical analysis shows that health is multi-dimensional, in the sense that different health indicators have their own significant impact on individuals' participation decisions. Health effects differ markedly between countries. A counterfactual exercise shows that improved health conditions may yield over 10 percentage points higher participation rates for men in countries like Austria, Germany and Spain, and for females in the Netherlands and Sweden. Moreover, we show that the declining health condition with age accounts considerably for the decline in participation rates with age.

Suggested Citation

  • Kalwij, Adriaan & Vermeulen, Frederic, 2005. "Labour Force Participation of the Elderly in Europe: The Importance of Being Healthy," IZA Discussion Papers 1887, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1887
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Edwin van Gameren, 2008. "Labor Force Participation of Mexican Elderly: The Importance of Health," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 23(1), pages 89-127.
    2. Bui, Thi Mai Van & Stolpe, Michael, 2007. "The impact of new drug launches on the loss of labor from disease and injury: evidence from German panel data," Kiel Working Papers 1317, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    3. repec:wfo:wstudy:46672 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Anders Stenberg & Xavier Luna & Olle Westerlund, 2012. "Can adult education delay retirement from the labour market?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 25(2), pages 677-696, January.
    5. Marchand, J. & Smeeding, T., 2016. "Poverty and Aging," Handbook of the Economics of Population Aging, Elsevier.
      • Marchand, Joseph & Smeeding, Timothy, 2016. "Poverty and Aging," Working Papers 2016-11, University of Alberta, Department of Economics, revised 20 Nov 2016.
    6. Dekkers, Gijs, 2008. "Are the old poor? A discussion and some cursory evidence," MPRA Paper 29436, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Teresa Ghilarducci, 2010. "The future of retirement in aging societies," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(3), pages 319-331.
    8. Hostenkamp, Gisela & Stolpe, Michael, 2008. "Optimal health and retirement policies amid population aging," Kiel Working Papers 1428, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    9. Van Bui & Michael Stolpe, 2010. "The impact of new drug launches on the loss of labor from disease and injury: evidence from German panel data," International Journal of Health Economics and Management, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 315-346, December.
    10. Anders Stenberg & Olle Westerlund, 2013. "Education and retirement: does University education at mid-age extend working life?," IZA Journal of European Labor Studies, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 2(1), pages 1-22, December.
    11. Serguey Ivanov, 2009. "Demographic and economic factors of labour supply: Long-term projections and policy options for France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom," Vienna Yearbook of Population Research, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna, vol. 7(1), pages 83-122.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    health; labour force participation; SHARE; retirement;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies

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