Inequality in Individual Mortality and Economic Conditions Earlier in Life

42 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2006

See all articles by Gerard J. van den Berg

Gerard J. van den Berg

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Tinbergen Institute

Maarten Lindeboom

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam; Tinbergen Institute Amsterdam; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Marta López

VU University Amsterdam

Date Written: November 2006

Abstract

We analyze the effect of being born in a recession on the mortality rate later in life in conjunction with social class. We use individual data records from Dutch registers of birth, marriage, and death certificates, covering the period 1815-2000, and we merge these with historical data on macro-economic outcomes and health indicators. We estimate duration models and inequality measures. The results indicate that being born in a recession increases the mortality rate later in life for most of the population. Lower social classes suffer disproportionally from being born in recessions. This exacerbates mortality inequality. This is not affected by social mobility: upward mobility does not vary much with the business cycle at birth. It turns out that the average long-run economic well-being of the family at birth, the transitory economic shocks at birth, and their interaction, are all relevant determinants of the mortality rate throughout the whole life.

Keywords: death, longevity, recession, life expectancy, lifetimes, social inequality, social class

JEL Classification: I12, J14, E32, N33, N13, C41

Suggested Citation

van den Berg, Gerard J. and Lindeboom, Maarten and López, Marta, Inequality in Individual Mortality and Economic Conditions Earlier in Life (November 2006). IZA Discussion Paper No. 2425. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=947079

Gerard J. Van den Berg (Contact Author)

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Economics ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 444 6132 (Phone)
+32 20 444 6020 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Tinbergen Institute

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

Maarten Lindeboom

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 444 6033 (Phone)
+31 20 444 6020 (Fax)

Tinbergen Institute Amsterdam

Gustav Mahlerplein 117
Amsterdam, 1082 MS
Netherlands

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Marta López

VU University Amsterdam ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
Amsterdam, ND North Holland 1081 HV
Netherlands

HOME PAGE: http://www.tinbergen.nl/scripts/tistudents.pl?id=220

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