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The Influence of Public Policy on Health, Wealth and Mortality

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  • John Karl Scholz

    (University of Wisconsin)

  • Ananth Seshadri

    (University of Wisconsin)

Abstract

In this project we extend an augmented lifecycle model, incorporating a Grossman-style model of health capital, to enhance understanding of factors influencing consumption, wealth and health. We develop three primary results when using the model to explore the effects of stylized versions of Medicare and Social Security on wealth and longevity. First, our model calibration implies consumption and health are complements. As health depreciates with age, households will get less utility from consumption than would be in the case of a lifecycle model that does not endogenize health. Second, it appears that forward-looking households, when confronted by a substantially reduced safety net, will respond by reducing consumption and by reducing their health investment and therefore longevity. Third, there is a potentially important difference between short- and long- run responses to policy.

Suggested Citation

  • John Karl Scholz & Ananth Seshadri, 2011. "The Influence of Public Policy on Health, Wealth and Mortality," Working Papers wp252, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  • Handle: RePEc:mrr:papers:wp252
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    File URL: http://www.mrrc.isr.umich.edu/publications/Papers/pdf/wp252.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Amy Finkelstein & Erzo F. P. Luttmer & Matthew J. Notowidigdo, 2013. "What Good Is Wealth Without Health? The Effect Of Health On The Marginal Utility Of Consumption," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11, pages 221-258, January.
    2. Kopecky, Karen A. & Koreshkova, Tatyana, 2010. "The impact of medical and nursing home expenses and social insurance," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2010-19, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, revised 01 Dec 2013.
    3. David Card & Carlos Dobkin & Nicole Maestas, 2009. "Does Medicare Save Lives?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(2), pages 597-636.
    4. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Introduction to "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings"," NBER Chapters,in: Schooling, Experience, and Earnings, pages 1-4 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Yogo, Motohiro, 2016. "Portfolio choice in retirement: Health risk and the demand for annuities, housing, and risky assets," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 17-34.
    6. Tatyana Koreshkova & Karen A. Kopecky, 2009. "The Impact of Medical and Nursing Home Expenses and Social Insurance Policies on Savings and Inequality," 2009 Meeting Papers 46, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Mariacristina De Nardi & Eric French & John B. Jones, 2010. "Why Do the Elderly Save? The Role of Medical Expenses," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(1), pages 39-75, February.
    8. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number minc74-1, June.
    9. Finkelstein, Amy & McKnight, Robin, 2008. "What did Medicare do? The initial impact of Medicare on mortality and out of pocket medical spending," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(7), pages 1644-1668, July.
    10. Fonseca, Raquel & Michaud, Pierre-Carl & Galama, Titus & Kapteyn, Arie, 2009. "On The Rise of Health Spending and Longevity," IZA Discussion Papers 4622, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    11. 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.
    12. Michael G. Palumbo, 1999. "Uncertain Medical Expenses and Precautionary Saving Near the End of the Life Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 66(2), pages 395-421.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. The Influence of Public Policy on Health, Wealth and Mortality
      by Christian Zimmermann in NEP-DGE blog on 2011-12-06 09:55:23
    2. The Influence of Public Policy on Health, Wealth and Mortality
      by Christian Zimmermann in NEP-DGE blog on 2011-12-06 09:55:23

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