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Happiness and the Persistence of Income Shocks

  • Jüßen, Falko
  • Bayer, Christian

We reassess the empirical effects of income and employment on self-reported well-being. Our analysis makes use of a two-step estimation procedure that allows applying instrumental variable regressions with ordinal observable data. As suggested by the theory of incomplete markets, we differentiate between the effects of persistent and transitory income shocks. In line with this theory, we find that persistent shocks have a significant impact on happiness while transitory shocks do not. This has consequences also for inference about the happiness effect of employment. We find that employment per se is rather associated with a decline in happiness.

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Paper provided by Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association in its series Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order with number 79915.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc13:79915
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.socialpolitik.org/
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  21. Bayer, Christian & Juessen, Falko, 2009. "The Life-Cycle and the Business-Cycle of Wage Risk: A Cross-Country Comparison," IZA Discussion Papers 4402, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  24. Paul Frijters & John P. Haisken-DeNew & Michael A. Shields, 2004. "Investigating the Patterns and Determinants of Life Satisfaction in Germany Following Reunification," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(3).
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  26. Huggett, Mark, 1993. "The risk-free rate in heterogeneous-agent incomplete-insurance economies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(5-6), pages 953-969.
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