Income and Wealth in the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing

25 Pages Posted: 18 May 2013

See all articles by Vincent O'Sullivan

Vincent O'Sullivan

University College London

Brian Nolan

Economic and Social Research Institute, Ireland

Alan Barrett

Economic and Social Research Institute; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

Between 2009 and 2011, data were collected under the first wave of The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA). Over 8,500 people aged 50 and over and living in Ireland were interviewed on a wide range of topics covering socioeconomic and health issues. Our primary goals in this paper are (a) to present details on two of the variables which will be of particular interest to economists, namely income and wealth and (b) to discuss issues in relation to their use, in particular with respect to missing data. We describe how the income and wealth data were collected. We assess the quality of the income data by comparing them to those obtained through the European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC).We find that the distribution of income in the TILDA sample resembles closely that found in a comparable sample from the EU-SILC. We undertake two pieces of analysis, by way of demonstrating potential applications of the data. First, we examine the joint distribution of income and assets and find that there is a small but non-negligible number of people who have low levels of income but high levels of assets and another similarly sized group in the opposite situation. Second, we consider the relationship between income/wealth and life satisfaction, another variable captured in TILDA. We find that income and housing wealth both affect life satisfaction but that the influence of income is much larger.

Keywords: income, wealth, ageing

JEL Classification: D31, J14

Suggested Citation

O'Sullivan, Vincent and Nolan, Brian and Barrett, Alan M., Income and Wealth in the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7393. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2266820

Vincent O'Sullivan (Contact Author)

University College London

Gower Street
London
United Kingdom

Brian Nolan

Economic and Social Research Institute, Ireland ( email )

4 Burlington Road
Dublin 4

Alan M. Barrett

Economic and Social Research Institute ( email )

4 Burlington Road
Dublin 4
Republic of Ireland
+35 31 667 1525 (Phone)
+35 31 668 6231 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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