nep-age New Economics Papers
on Economics of Ageing
Issue of 2024‒02‒19
eight papers chosen by
Claudia Villosio, LABORatorio R. Revelli

  1. Taking Back Control? Quasi-Experimental Evidence on the Impact of Retirement on Locus of Control By Clark, Andrew E.; Zhu, Rong
  2. Gender wage and longevity gaps and the design of retirement systems By Francesca Barigozzi; Helmuth Cremer; Jean-Marie Lozachmeur
  3. Occupational Differences in the Effects of Retirement on Hospitalizations for Mental Illness among Female Workers: Evidence from Administrative Data in China By Wang, Tianyu; Sun, Ruochen; Sindelar, Jody L.; Chen, Xi
  4. Early Life Exposure to the Great Chinese Famine (1959–1961) and the Health of Older Adults in China: A Meta-Analysis (2008–2023) By Shen, Chi; Chen, Xi
  5. The Wealth of Working Nations By Jesús Fernández-Villaverde; Gustavo Ventura; Wen Yao
  6. The Gender Wealth Gap near Retirement in Canada By LoRiggio, Tessa; Morris, Todd
  7. Can unions impose costs on employers in education strikes? Evidence from pension disputes in UK universities By Nils Braakmann; Barbara Eberth
  8. Gender Inequality over the Life Cycle, Information Provision and Policy Preferences By Alessandra Casarico; Jana Schuetz; Silke Uebelmesser

  1. By: Clark, Andrew E. (Paris School of Economics); Zhu, Rong (Flinders University)
    Abstract: We use nationally representative panel data from Australia to consider the impact of retirement on individual locus of control, a socio-emotional skill that has substantial explanatory power for a broad range of life outcomes. We establish causality via cohort-specific eligibility age for the Australian Age Pension. We show that retirement leads to increased internal locus of control. This greater sense of internal control can explain around one-third and one-fifth of the positive effects of retirement on health and subjective well-being, respectively. The impact of retirement on control beliefs varies along the distribution of locus of control, with the positive influence being most pronounced for men with a relatively high sense of internal control and for women with a relatively high sense of external control. Last, we provide evidence that locus of control is much more malleable at retirement than the other socio-emotional skills of the Big-Five personality traits, risk and time preferences, and trust.
    Keywords: retirement, locus of control, socio-emotional skills, public pension
    JEL: H55 J24 J26
    Date: 2023–12
  2. By: Francesca Barigozzi (UNIBO - Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna = University of Bologna); Helmuth Cremer (TSE-R - Toulouse School of Economics - UT Capitole - Université Toulouse Capitole - UT - Université de Toulouse - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Jean-Marie Lozachmeur (TSE-R - Toulouse School of Economics - UT Capitole - Université Toulouse Capitole - UT - Université de Toulouse - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: We study the design of pension benets for male and female workers. Women live longer than men but have a lower wage. Individuals can be single or live in couples who pool their incomes. Social welfare is utilitarian but an increasing concave transformation of individuals lifetime utilities introduces the concern for redistribution between individuals with di¤erent life-spans. We derive the optimal direction of redistribution and show how it is a¤ected by a gender neutrality rule. With singles only, a simple utilitarian solution implies re- distribution from males to females. When the transformation is su¢ ciently concave redistribution may or may not be reversed. With couples only, the ranking of gender retirement ages is always reversed when the transformation is su¢ ciently concave. Under gender neutrality pension schemes must be self-selecting. With singles only this implies distortions of retirement decision and restricts redistribution across genders. With couples, a rst best that implies a lower retirement age for females can be implemented by a gender-neutral system. Otherwise, gender neutrality implies equal retirement ages and restricts the possibility to compensate the shorter-lived individuals. Calibrated simulations show that when singles and couples coexist, gender neutrality substantially limits redistribution in favor of single women and fully prevents redistribution in favor of male spouses.
    Keywords: Gender wage gap, Gender gap in longevity, Retirement systems
    Date: 2023–05
  3. By: Wang, Tianyu; Sun, Ruochen; Sindelar, Jody L.; Chen, Xi
    Abstract: Retirement, a major transition in the life course, may affect many aspects of retirees' well-being, including health and health care utilization. Leveraging differential statutory retirement age (SRA) by occupation for China's urban female workers, we provide some of the first evidence on the causal effect of retirement on hospitalizations attributable to mental illness and its heterogeneity. To address endogeneity in retirement decisions, we take advantage of exogeneity of the differing SRA cut-offs for blue-collar (age 50) and white-collar (age 55) female urban employees. We apply a Fuzzy Regression Discontinuity Design (RDD) around the SRA cut-offs using nationally representative hospital inpatient claims data that cover these workers. We show that blue-collar females incur more hospitalizations for mental illness after retirement, while no similar change is found for white-collar females. Conditional on blue-collar females being hospitalized, probabilities of overall and ER admissions due to mental illness increase by 2.3 and 1.2 percentage points upon retirement, respectively. The effects are primarily driven by patients within the categories of schizophrenia, schizotypal and delusional disorders; and neurotic, stress-related and somatoform disorders. Moreover, the 'Donut' RDD estimates suggest that pent-up demand at retirement unlikely dominates our findings for blue-collar females. Rather, our results lend support to their worsening mental health at retirement. These findings suggest that occupational differences in mental illness and related health care utilization at retirement should be considered when optimizing retirement policy schemes.
    Keywords: mental illness, behavioral disorders, retirement, inpatient care, blue-collar females, white-collar females
    JEL: I11 J26 J14 I18 H55
    Date: 2024
  4. By: Shen, Chi (Xi’an Jiaotong University); Chen, Xi (Yale University)
    Abstract: There is mounting evidence indicating that the aging process initiates during early life stages, with in utero the individual's environment playing a significant role. Consequently, it is crucial to understand the enduring effects of early life circumstances on health in old age. In this study, we conducted a meta-analysis to examine the effects of the Great Chinese Famine (1959–1961) on the health of older adults. We also explored potential mechanisms underlying these effects. The complex interplay between early life circumstances, multiple health-related sectors, and healthy aging necessitates a comprehensive life-course approach and strategic interventions to enhance public health in an aging society.
    Keywords: early life circumstances, famine, life course health, aging, meta-analysis
    JEL: I14 J14 J13 I18
    Date: 2024–01
  5. By: Jesús Fernández-Villaverde (University of Pennsylvania); Gustavo Ventura (Arizona State University); Wen Yao (Tsinghua University)
    Abstract: Due to population aging, GDP growth per capita and GDP growth per working-age adult have become quite different among many advanced economies over the last several decades. Countries whose GDP growth per capita performance has been lackluster, like Japan, have done surprisingly well in terms of GDP growth per working-age adult. Indeed, from 1998 to 2019, Japan has grown slightly faster than the U.S. in terms of per working-age adult: an accumulated 31.9% vs. 29.5%. Furthermore, many advanced economies appear to be on parallel balanced growth trajectories in terms of working-age adults despite important differences in levels. Motivated by this observation, we calibrate a standard neoclassical growth model in which the growth of the working-age adult population varies in line with the data for each economy. Despite the underlying demographic differences, the calibrated model tracks output per working-age adult in most economies of our sample. Our results imply that the growth behavior of mature, aging economies is not puzzling from a theoretical perspective.
    Keywords: Demographics, Growth, Developed Economies
    JEL: E2 J1
    Date: 2023–11–19
  6. By: LoRiggio, Tessa (RMIT University); Morris, Todd (University of Queensland)
    Abstract: The gender pay gap not only affects women's financial security during their working lives but also their wealth available for retirement. This note reveals a large gender wealth gap in Canada among singles near retirement. Using a repeated national wealth survey from 1999 to 2019, we find an average wealth gap favouring men at ages 45–59 of $56, 000 or 16%, and the estimated gap rises to $96, 000 or 27% after accounting for gender differences in demographic characteristics. There is no evidence that the wealth gap is narrowing, which is largely explained by the gender earnings gap. Previously married women are particularly disadvantaged, which may reflect the persistent earnings penalties faced by women who have children.
    Keywords: gender wealth gap, gender earnings gap, retirement wealth, business equity, costs of divorce
    JEL: D31 J31
    Date: 2024–01
  7. By: Nils Braakmann; Barbara Eberth
    Abstract: The impact of strikes in educational institutions, specifically universities, on employers remains understudied. This paper investigates the impact of education strikes in UK universities from 2018 to 2022, primarily due to pension disputes. Using data from the Guardian University Guide and the 2014 and 2021 Research Excellence Frameworks and leveraging difference-in-differences and regression discontinuity approaches, our findings suggest significant declines in several student related outcomes, such as student satisfaction, and a more mixed picture for student attainment and research performance. These results highlight the substantial, albeit indirect, cost unions can impose on university employers during strikes.
    Date: 2024–01
  8. By: Alessandra Casarico; Jana Schuetz; Silke Uebelmesser
    Abstract: We conduct a survey experiment with four thousand German respondents and provide information on two measures of gender inequality, separately or jointly: the gender gap in earnings and the gender gap in pensions. We analyze the effect of information provision on respondents’ views on the importance of reducing gender inequality and on their agreement with the adoption of policies targeted at different stages of the life cycle and aimed at reducing the gaps. We find that providing information on both gaps changes perceptions of the importance of reducing gender inequality and adopting policy measures to this end. Information on only one gap tends to have insignificant effects. By exploring the mechanisms behind our results, we provide insights into the importance of individual views on female disadvantages in the labor market, personal experience of inequality, and social norms as correlates of preferences for reducing gender inequality and policy interventions. We also show that information provision has larger effects on women and young respondents, while treatment effects do not differ by political leaning. These individual characteristics also relate to differences in identifying causes of gender inequality.
    Keywords: gender earnings, gap, gender pension gap, gender inequality, survey experiment, information provision, policy preferences
    JEL: C90 D63 J16 J38
    Date: 2024

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