nep-age New Economics Papers
on Economics of Ageing
Issue of 2021‒08‒23
ten papers chosen by
Claudia Villosio
LABORatorio R. Revelli

  1. The Impact of Covid-19 on Older Workers' Employment and Social Security Spillovers By Gopi Shah Goda; Emilie Jackson; Lauren Hersch Nicholas; Sarah See Stith
  2. End-of-life planning depends on socio-economic and racial background: evidence from the US Health and Retirement Study (HRS) By Orlovic, Martina; Warraich, Haider; Wolf, Douglas; Mossialos, Elias
  3. The Effect of Heavy Smoking on Early Retirement: An Instrumental Variable Approach By Gaggero, A.; Ajnakina, O.; Hackett, R.A
  4. Attention Please! Health Plan Choice and (In-)Attention By Tamara Bischof; Michael Gerfin; Tobias Mueller
  5. Retirement and Health Outcomes in a Meta-Analytical Framework By Filomena, Mattia; Picchio, Matteo
  6. Expanding Postbaccalaureate Programs to Address California’s Health Workforce Crisis By Janice Genevro; Diane Rittenhouse; Alexandra Ament
  7. Pensions, Income Taxes and Homeownership: A Cross-Country Analysis By Hans Fehr; Maurice Hofmann; George Kudrna
  8. The Patterns of Parental Intervivos Transfers to Adult Children By Marla Ripoll
  9. Do State SNAP Policies Influence Program Participation among Seniors? By Jordan W. Jones; Charles J. Courtemanche; Augustine Denteh; James Marton; Rusty Tchernis
  10. Community Support for Foreign Senior Care Workers in Rural Japan and the Factors that Affect Perception of Receiving Care By R. Lamb, Austin

  1. By: Gopi Shah Goda; Emilie Jackson; Lauren Hersch Nicholas; Sarah See Stith
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic and associated mitigation strategies exacted a large economic toll on large portions of the United States population. For older and disabled workers, the effects could be more persistent and fiscally costly than the impacts experienced by young, healthy workers due to the spillovers onto Social Security. We use Current Population Survey, Social Security administrative data on applications for retirement and disability benefits, and Google Trends data to assess the impact of COVID-19 on older adults age 50-70. We find that employment for this group dropped substantially more than would have been predicted prior to the pandemic: employment for 50-61 year olds was 5.7 pp (8.3 percent) lower, while employment for 62-70-year- olds was 3.9 pp (10.7 percent) lower. For people aged 50-61, unemployment and labor force exits due to reasons other than disability and retirement represented 63 and 30 percent of the employment decline, respectively. For those aged 62-70, the two largest components of the reduction were unemployment (50 percent) and retirement-driven labor force exits (30 percent). We find evidence of declines in reporting a labor force exit due to disability (4-5 percent), applications for disability insurance (15 percent), and Google search intensity for disability (7 percent). Retirement benefit claiming remains largely unchanged overall, though we find evidence that applicants substituted towards filing for benefits via the internet. We explore potential mechanisms and find evidence for both supply- and demand-side explanations.
    JEL: H53 H55 J22 J23 J26
    Date: 2021–07
  2. By: Orlovic, Martina; Warraich, Haider; Wolf, Douglas; Mossialos, Elias
    Abstract: Context: Americans express a strong preference for participating in decisions regarding their medical care, yet they are often unable to participate in decision-making regarding their end-of-life care. Objective: To examine determinants of end-of-life planning; including, the effect of an individual's ageing and dying process, health status and socio-economic and racial/ethnic background. Methods: US observational cohort study, using data from the Health and Retirement Study (1992 – 2014) including 37,494 individuals. Random-effects logistic regression analysis was used to examine the relationship between the presence of a living will and a range of individual time-varying characteristics, including time to death, and several time-invariant characteristics. Results: End-of-life planning depends on several patient characteristics and circumstances, with socio-economic and racial/ethnic background having the largest effects. The probability of having a living will rises sharply late in life, as we would expect, and is further modified by the patient's proximity to death. The dying process, exerts a stronger influence on end-of-life planning than does the aging. Conclusions: Understanding differences that increase end-of-life planning is important to incentivize patients’ participation. Advance planning should be encouraged and accessible to people of all ages as it is inevitable for the provision of patient-centered and cost-effective care.
    Keywords: advance care planning; end-of-life; end-of-life planning; living will
    JEL: N0
    Date: 2021–05–28
  3. By: Gaggero, A.; Ajnakina, O.; Hackett, R.A
    Abstract: The extent to which heavy smoking and early retirement are causally related remains to be determined. To overcome the endogeneity of heavy smoking behaviour, we employ a novel approach by exploiting Mendelian Randomisation and use genetic predisposition to heavy smoking, as measured with a polygenic risk score (PGS), as an instrumental variable. A total of 3578 participants from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (mean age 64.41 years) had data on smoking behaviour, employment and a heavy smoking PGS. Heavy smoking was indexed as smoking at least 20 cigarettes a day. Early retirement was classified as retiring before state pension age. Our results show that being a heavy smoker increases significantly the probability of early retirement. Results were robust to a battery of robustness checks and a falsification test. Overall, our findings support a causal pathway from heavy smoking to early retirement.
    Keywords: smoking; early retirement; polygenic risk scores; instrumental variable; mendelian randomisation
    Date: 2021–08
  4. By: Tamara Bischof; Michael Gerfin; Tobias Mueller
    Abstract: We study the role of inattention as a key source of inertia in health plan choices. Our structural model shows that more than 90% of the elderly in Switzerland are inattentive and thus stick to their previous plan. We estimate sizeable switching costs even conditional on attention explaining part of the observed choice persistence. Inattention leads to overspending and generates considerable welfare losses for most consumers. A policy simulation shows that eliminating financially dominated plans from the choice set yields welfare gains for two thirds of individuals.
    Keywords: health plan choice, inertia, attention, switching costs, managed competition, elderly
    JEL: D12 G22 I13 D90 J14
    Date: 2021–08
  5. By: Filomena, Mattia (Marche Polytechnic University); Picchio, Matteo (Università Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona)
    Abstract: This paper presents a meta-analysis on the effects of retirement on health. We select academic papers published between 2000 and 2021 studying the impact of retirement on physical and mental health, self-assessed general health, healthcare utilization and mortality. Among 275 observations from 85 articles, 28% (13%) find positive (negative) effects of retirement on health outcomes. Almost 60% of the observations do not provide statistically significant findings. Using meta-regression analysis, we checked for the presence of publication bias after distinguishing among different journal subject areas and, once correcting for it, we find that the average effect of retirement on health outcomes is small and barely significant. We apply model averaging techniques to explore possible sources of heterogeneity and our results suggest that the different estimated effects can be explained by the differences in both health measurements and retirement schemes.
    Keywords: retirement, health, meta-analysis, meta-regression, publication bias
    JEL: I10 J14 J26
    Date: 2021–07
  6. By: Janice Genevro; Diane Rittenhouse; Alexandra Ament
    Abstract: California is facing a health workforce crisis. There are not enough health workers to meet the needs of the state’s increasingly diverse, growing, and aging population. This Health Workforce Strategies for California series highlights current critical health workforce interventions and builds on the findings of the California Future Health Workforce Commission.
    Keywords: Postbaccalaureate programs, California, health workforce
  7. By: Hans Fehr; Maurice Hofmann; George Kudrna
    Abstract: This paper studies the role of pensions and income taxes in determining homeownership and household wealth. It provides a cross-country analysis, using tax and pension policy designs in Germany, the US and Australia. These developed nations have similar incomes per capita but very different homeownership rates, with the US and Australia having much higher homeownership compared to Germany. The question is to what extent the observed differences in homeownership are induced by national tax and transfer policies. To that end, we develop a stochastic, overlapping generations (OLG) model with tenure choice. The model is calibrated to Germany featuring German statutory public pension and dual income tax systems, and then applied to study the effects of alternative income tax and pension policy structures. Our simulation results indicate that the US and Australian policy designs have a dramatic impact on homeownership, explaining more than half of the observed differentials. We also show significant macroeconomic effects due to differences in tax and pension policies.
    Keywords: housing demand, social security, income taxation, stochastic general equilibrium
    JEL: R21 H55 H31 H24 C68
    Date: 2021
  8. By: Marla Ripoll
    Abstract: Parental intervivos transfers to adult children occur in families across the income distribution. This paper documents and analyzes novel patterns of parental intervivos transfers that are informative to dynamic models of transfers. We sue longitudinal data on parental transfers from the 1996-2014 Health and Retirement Study to characterize the age profile of transfers, including the probability and the transfer amount (unconditional and conditional). We then follow the 1967-71 cohort to describe the frequency of transfers, the distribution of years between transfers, and the total transfers received during different age brackets. Last, we use a dynamic model of parental altruism to analyze the mechanisms generating the distinct transfer types observed in the data. We find that in addition to the cross-sectional patterns documented in the literature, parental altruism is essential to explain the novel dynamic facts on intervivos transfers from longitudinal data.
    Date: 2021–01
  9. By: Jordan W. Jones; Charles J. Courtemanche; Augustine Denteh; James Marton; Rusty Tchernis
    Abstract: Senior participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) has traditionally been lower than other groups among those eligible, with historical estimates below 50 percent. We examine the impacts of state SNAP policies on program participation among low-income senior (age 60 and older) and non-senior households using data from the 2001-2014 December Current Population Survey Food Security Supplement. Our results suggest that policies designed to expand SNAP eligibility modestly increased participation among seniors but led to larger increases among non-seniors. In contrast, we find little evidence of effects of policies related to transaction costs, stigma, or outreach on either group.
    JEL: I32 I38 J14 Q18
    Date: 2021–07
  10. By: R. Lamb, Austin
    Abstract: Japanese senior care demands have seen significant growth over the last several decades from a dramatic increase in the senior demographic (+65 in age), a high senior concentration in the current Japanese society brought about by age longevity, and the improved quality standard of care and greater accessibility by the governments revision of the Long‐term Care Insurance (LTCI) program. The supply side is also suffering from both a decreasing population growth of youth category (14 and younger) and a static graduation rate of new nursing that is not growing commensurate with the demand. The government has begun to understand these detrimental factors and further revised national immigration policy to categorize senior care aid workers as skilled labor. The growth in demand for senior care services, the static domestic labor structure, and the new leniency of immigration policies has created various opportunities for foreign workers who are considering Japan as their new country of residence. The greater inflow of migrants into Japan could be a solution that can bring the country back to an acceptable level of prosperity and high quality‐of‐life for the senior population that the nation once had in the stable‐growth period.However, there is a significant difference between attracting foreign migrants to the Japanese senior care industry and retaining the migrants once they are working in their full capacity. This paper introduces survey research to identify if community survey participants agree with migration in senior care and which factors affect their perception of receiving care from foreign caregivers. The survey includes 563 citizens within 12 different cities chosen randomly within Page | 1 Hiroshima, Shimane, and Yamaguchi prefectures. Their feedback on the opinion has highlighted several weaknesses in society that can be mitigated through appropriate public policy revision, community development, and legal protections. It is important to react in the short term to reverse the negative trends; especially, since foreigners are becoming harder to attract due to the stagnation economic conditions of Japan and the continued growth of the senior citizen base in need of qualified care.
    Keywords: Japanese immigration policy, senior care, foreign workers, rural communities, factors, perception, J20, F22
    Date: 2021–07

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