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The Impact of Childhood Health on Adult Labor Market Outcomes

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  • James P. Smith

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of childhood health on a series of SES outcomes observed during adulthood. These outcomes include levels and trajectories of education, family income, household wealth, individual earnings and labor supply. The analysis is conducted using unique data that collects these SES measures starting with a panel who were originally children and who are now well into their adult years. Since all siblings are also included in the panel, one is able to control for all unmeasured family and neighborhood background effects. With the exception of education, it is found that the poor childhood health has a quantitatively large effect on all these outcomes. Moreover, these estimated effects are much larger when unobserved family effects are controlled.

Suggested Citation

  • James P. Smith, 2005. "The Impact of Childhood Health on Adult Labor Market Outcomes," Working Papers WR-319, RAND Corporation.
  • Handle: RePEc:ran:wpaper:wr-319
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1976. "Child Endowments and the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages 143-162, August.
    2. Angrist, Joshua D. & Krueger, Alan B., 1999. "Empirical strategies in labor economics," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 23, pages 1277-1366 Elsevier.
    3. repec:pri:cheawb:case_paxson_economic_status_paper is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Janet Currie & Mark Stabile, 2003. "Socioeconomic Status and Child Health: Why Is the Relationship Stronger for Older Children?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1813-1823, December.
    5. repec:pri:cheawb:case_paxson_economic_status_paper.pdf is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Rosemary Hyson & Janet Currie, 1999. "Is the Impact of Health Shocks Cushioned by Socioeconomic Status? The Case of Low Birthweight," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 245-250, May.
    7. Bound, John & Solon, Gary, 1999. "Double trouble: on the value of twins-based estimation of the return to schooling," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 169-182, April.
    8. Philip Oreopoulos & Mark Stabile & Randy Walld & Leslie L. Roos, 2008. "Short-, Medium-, and Long-Term Consequences of Poor Infant Health: An Analysis Using Siblings and Twins," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
    9. Case, Anne & Fertig, Angela & Paxson, Christina, 2005. "The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 365-389, March.
    10. Smith, James P, 1998. "Socioeconomic Status and Health," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 192-196, May.
    11. James P. Smith, 1999. "Healthy Bodies and Thick Wallets: The Dual Relation between Health and Economic Status," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(2), pages 145-166, Spring.
    12. Arie Kapteyn & James P. Smith & Arthur Van Soest, 2004. "Self-reported Work Disability in the US and The Netherlands," Working Papers WR-206, RAND Corporation.
    13. Douglas Almond & Kenneth Y. Chay & David S. Lee, 2005. "The Costs of Low Birth Weight," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 1031-1083.
    14. Anne Case & Darren Lubotsky & Christina Paxson, 2002. "Economic Status and Health in Childhood: The Origins of the Gradient," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1308-1334, December.
    15. Currie, Alison & Shields, Michael A. & Wheatley Price, Stephen, 2004. "Is the Child Health / Family Income Gradient Universal? Evidence from England," IZA Discussion Papers 1328, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • J00 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - General

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