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Financial Health Economics

Author

Listed:
  • Ralph Koijen
  • Tomas Philipson
  • Harald Uhlig

Abstract

We provide a theoretical and empirical analysis of the link between financial and real health care markets. This link is important as financial returns drive investment in medical research and development (R&D), which in turn, affects real spending growth. We document a “medical innovation premium” of 4-6% annually for equity returns of firms in the health care sector. We interpret this premium as compensating investors for government-induced profit risk, and we provide supportive evidence for this hypothesis through company filings and abnormal return patterns surrounding threats of government intervention. We quantify the implications of the premium for the growth in real health care spending by calibrating our model to match historical trends, predicting the share of GDP devoted to health care to be 32% in the long run. Policies that had removed government risk would have led to more than a doubling of medical R&D and would have increased the current share of health care spending by more than 3% of GDP.

Suggested Citation

  • Ralph Koijen & Tomas Philipson & Harald Uhlig, 2014. "Financial Health Economics," NBER Working Papers 20075, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:20075
    Note: HE EFG
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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w20075.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2003. "Average Debt and Equity Returns: Puzzling?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 392-397, May.
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    3. Deborah Lucas, 2010. "Measuring and Managing Federal Financial Risk," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number luca07-1, June.
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    5. Belo, Frederico & Gala, Vito D. & Li, Jun, 2013. "Government spending, political cycles, and the cross section of stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(2), pages 305-324.
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    7. Xavier Gabaix, 2012. "Variable Rare Disasters: An Exactly Solved Framework for Ten Puzzles in Macro-Finance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(2), pages 645-700.
    8. Kristopher J. Hult & Tomas J. Philipson, 2012. "Public Liabilities and Health Care Policy," NBER Working Papers 18571, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Gerdtham, Ulf-G. & Jonsson, Bengt, 2000. "International comparisons of health expenditure: Theory, data and econometric analysis," Handbook of Health Economics,in: A. J. Culyer & J. P. Newhouse (ed.), Handbook of Health Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 1, pages 11-53 Elsevier.
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    12. Golec, Joseph & Hegde, Shantaram & Vernon, John A., 2010. "Pharmaceutical R&D Spending and Threats of Price Regulation," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 45(01), pages 239-264, February.
    13. Tim Loughran & Bill Mcdonald, 2011. "When Is a Liability Not a Liability? Textual Analysis, Dictionaries, and 10‐Ks," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 66(1), pages 35-65, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jeffrey Clemens & Stan Veuger, 2015. "Risks to the Returns to Medical Innovation: The Case of Myriad Genetics," NBER Working Papers 21469, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Janssen, W.H.P., 2015. "Essays in financial reporting, tax, and politics," Other publications TiSEM 4d9fd983-7774-43d8-9a74-e, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G0 - Financial Economics - - General
    • I0 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - General

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