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Individual Mortality and Macro-Economic Conditions from Birth to Death

  • Lindeboom, Maarten

    ()

    (VU University Amsterdam)

  • Portrait, France

    ()

    (VU University Amsterdam)

  • van den Berg, Gerard J.

    ()

    (University of Mannheim)

This paper analyzes the effects of macro-economic conditions throughout life on the individual mortality rate. We estimate flexible duration models where the individual’s mortality rate depends on current conditions, conditions earlier in life (notably during childhood), calendar time, age, individual characteristics, including individual socio-economic indicators, and interaction terms. We use individual data records from Dutch registers of birth, marriage, and death certificates, covering an observation window of unprecedented size (1812-1999). These are merged with historical data on macro-economic and health indicators. The results indicate a strong effect of macro-economic conditions during childhood on mortality at all ages. Those who are born in bad times on average have a high mortality rate throughout life, in particular during childhood itself and at ages above 50. Current macro-economic conditions mostly have an effect on youths and on the elderly.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 930.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2003
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as: 'Economic Conditions Early in Life and Individual Mortality' in: American Economic Review, 2006, 96 (1), 290-302
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp930
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  1. Anne Case & Angela Fertig & Christina Paxson, 2003. "From Cradle to Grave? The Lasting Impact of Childhood Health and Circumstance," NBER Working Papers 9788, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Abbring, J.H. & Berg, G.J. & Ours, J.C., 1994. "The anatomy of unemployment dynamics," Serie Research Memoranda 0024, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
  3. Van den Berg, Gerard J., 2001. "Duration models: specification, identification and multiple durations," Handbook of Econometrics, in: J.J. Heckman & E.E. Leamer (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 55, pages 3381-3460 Elsevier.
  4. Frank R. Lichtenberg, 2002. "Sources of U.S. Longevity Increase, 1960-1997," NBER Working Papers 8755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Gabriele Doblhammer, 2003. "The late life legacy of very early life," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2003-030, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  6. Abbring, J.H. & van den Berg, G. & van Ours, J.C., 2002. "The anatomy of unemployment dynamics," Other publications TiSEM 539d10a7-be00-4a8e-9c9c-9, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  7. Pritchett, Lant & Summers, Lawrence H., 1993. "Wealthier is healthier," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1150, The World Bank.
  8. Christopher J. Ruhm, 2000. "Are Recessions Good For Your Health?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 617-650, May.
  9. Diane J. Macunovich, 1999. "The fortunes of one's birth: Relative cohort size and the youth labor market in the United States," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 215-272.
  10. Orazio P. Attanasio & Carl Emmerson, 2001. "Differential Mortality in the UK," NBER Working Papers 8241, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Abbring, J.H. & van den Berg, G. & van Ours, J.C., 1999. "The Anatomy of Unemployment Dynamics," Discussion Paper 1999-81, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  12. Christine Himes, 1994. "Age patterns of mortality and cause-of-death structures in Sweden, Japan, and the United States," Demography, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 633-650, November.
  13. Kevin M. Murphy & Robert H. Topel, 2006. "The Value of Health and Longevity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(5), pages 871-904, October.
  14. David Cutler & Ellen Meara, 2001. "Changes in the Age Distribution of Mortality Over the 20th Century," NBER Working Papers 8556, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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