nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2021‒12‒06
twenty-two papers chosen by
Nicolas R. Ziebarth
Cornell University

  1. Learning-by-Doing and Productivity Growth among High-Skilled Workers: Evidence from the Treatment of Heart Attacks By Lundborg, Petter; James, Stefan; Lagerqvist, Bo; Vikström, Johan
  2. The Long-Term Health Impact of Agent Orange: Evidence from the Vietnam War By Le, Duong Trung; Pham, Thanh Minh; Polachek, Solomon
  3. Inequality in Mortality between Black and White Americans by Age, Place, and Cause, and in Comparison to Europe, 1990-2018 By Schwandt, Hannes; Currie, Janet; Bär, Marlies; Banks, James; Bertoli, Paola; Bütikofer, Aline; Cattan, Sarah; Chao, Beatrice Zong-Ying; Costa, Claudia; Gonzalez, Libertad; Grembi, Veronica; Huttunen, Kristiina; Karadakic, René; Kraftman, Lucy; Krutikova, Sonya; Lombardi, Stefano; Redler, Peter; Riumallo Herl, Carlos; Rodríguez-González, Ana; Salvanes, Kjell G.; Santana, Paula; Thuilliez, Josselin; van Doorslaer, Eddy; Van Ourti, Tom; Winter, Joachim; Wouterse, Bram; Wuppermann, Amelie
  4. Predicting Mortality from Credit Reports By Giacomo De Giorgi; Matthew Harding; Gabriel Vasconcelos
  5. Intergenerational Actuarial Fairness when Longevity Increases: Amending the Retirement Age By Jorge Miguel Bravo; Mercedes Ayuso; Robert Holzmann; Edward Palmer
  6. One Country, Two Systems: Evidence on Retirement Patterns in China By Giles, John T.; Lei, Xiaoyan; Wang, Gewei; Wang, Yafeng; Zhao, Yaohui
  7. Dynamic analysis of loneliness and disability at older ages in Europe by gender By Pagan, Ricardo; Malo, Miguel
  8. Differentiated Excise Taxation in the Beer Market By Seungjin Han; Josip Lesica
  9. School Integration of Refugee Children: Evidence from the Largest Refugee Group in Any Country By Kirdar, Murat G.; Koc, Ismet; Dayioglu-Tayfur, Meltem
  10. The many faces of health justice By Sudhir Anand
  11. The COVID-19 Pandemic and Its Impact on Socioeconomic Inequality in Psychological Distress in the UK: An Update By Gao, Xiaoying; Davillas, Apostolos; Jones, Andrew M.
  12. When Face Masks Signal Social Identity: Explaining the Deep Face-Mask Divide during the COVID-19 Pandemic By Powdthavee, Nattavudh; Riyanto, Yohanes E.; Wong, Erwin; Yeo, Jonathan; Chan, Qi Yu
  13. Perceived risk and vaccine hesitancy:Quasi-experimental evidence from Italy By Claudio Deiana; Andrea Geraci; Gianluca Mazzarella; Fabio Sabatini
  14. Covid-19 and the Forces Behind Social Unrest By Lackner, Mario; Sunde, Uwe; Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf
  15. What Determines Social Distancing? Evidence from Advanced and Emerging Market Economies By Frederico Lima; Hibah Khan; Ms. Era Dabla-Norris
  16. Who Doesn’t Want to be Vaccinated? Determinants of Vaccine Hesitancy During COVID-19 By Frederico Lima; Alexandre Sollaci; Hibah Khan; Ms. Era Dabla-Norris
  17. COVID-19 in Latin America: A High Toll on Lives and Livelihoods By Carlos Goncalves; Mr. Bas B. Bakker
  18. The Psychological Gains from COVID-19 Vaccination: Who Benefits the Most? By Bagues, Manuel; Dimitrova, Velichka
  19. PeCan relief measures nudge compliance in a public health crisis? Evidence from a kinked fiscal policy rule By Claudio Deiana; Andrea Geraci; Gianluca Mazzarella; Fabio Sabatini
  20. How the COVID-19 Pandemic Changed Household Migration in New England By Nicholas Chiumenti
  21. The Evolving Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Gender Inequality in the U.S. Labor Market: The COVID Motherhood Penalty By Couch, Kenneth A.; Fairlie, Robert W.; Xu, Huanan
  22. Parental Investment, School Choice, and the Persistent Benefits of Intervention in Early Childhood By Lei Wang; Yiwei Qian; Nele Warrinnier; Orazio Attanasio; Scott Rozelle; Sean Sylvia

  1. By: Lundborg, Petter (Lund University); James, Stefan (Uppsala University); Lagerqvist, Bo (Uppsala University); Vikström, Johan (IFAU)
    Abstract: Learning-by-doing is a fundamental concept in economics but a challenging one to document in high-skilled settings due to non-random assignment of workers to tasks and lacking performance measures. Our paper overcomes these challenges in the context of heart attack treatments in Sweden, where we exploit quasirandom assignment of physicians to patients. We document long learning curves, where physicians keep learning over the first 1000 treatments performed, affecting both proficiency and decision-making skills. These learning effects translate into effects on patient health, but only over the first 150 treatments performed, corresponding to one year of experience. Learning rates are higher for physicians who have worked with more experienced colleagues and who have gained more experience in treating complicated cases. Experienced physicians are more responsive to patient characteristics when deciding on treatments and experience from more recent heart attack treatments is more valuable than experience from more distant ones, suggesting that human capital depreciates. We also show that productivity growth keeps pace with wage growth over the first four years of the career but flattens out thereafter. Our results provide rare evidence on the existence of prolonged learning curves in high-skilled tasks and support the notion that learning-by-doing can be a powerful mechanism for productivity growth.
    Keywords: operation volume, learning-by-doing, survival, causal effect
    JEL: I11 I12 I18 L11
    Date: 2021–09
  2. By: Le, Duong Trung (World Bank); Pham, Thanh Minh (Binghamton University, New York); Polachek, Solomon (Binghamton University, New York)
    Abstract: This paper examines the long-term health impact of Agent Orange, a toxic military herbicide containing dioxin that was used extensively during the U.S.-Vietnam war in the 1960-70s. Using a nationally representative health survey and an instrumental variable approach that addresses the potential endogeneity in the location and the intensity of U.S. defoliant missions, we report several findings. First, relative to the average prevalence rate of the sample population, we find that Vietnamese civilians located in a commune one-standard-deviation more exposed to herbicide during the war were 19.75 percent more likely to suffer from a health disease medically linked to Agent Orange three decades later. Second, disaggregating by disease types, we observe significant effects on blood pressure disease and mobility disability. Third, across cohorts, we find significant detrimental impact on those born before herbicide missions ended, especially among wartime children, infants, and those in-utero during the 1962-1971 period.
    Keywords: Agent Orange, herbicide, health, conflicts, Vietnam war
    JEL: N45 I10 Q53
    Date: 2021–10
  3. By: Schwandt, Hannes (Northwestern University); Currie, Janet (Princeton University); Bär, Marlies (Erasmus School of Health Policy and Management); Banks, James (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London); Bertoli, Paola (University of Verona); Bütikofer, Aline (Norwegian School of Economics); Cattan, Sarah (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London); Chao, Beatrice Zong-Ying (Northwestern University); Costa, Claudia (University of Coimbra); Gonzalez, Libertad (Universitat Pompeu Fabra); Grembi, Veronica (University of Milan); Huttunen, Kristiina (Aalto University); Karadakic, René (Norwegian School of Economics); Kraftman, Lucy (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London); Krutikova, Sonya (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London); Lombardi, Stefano (VATT, Helsinki); Redler, Peter (University of Munich); Riumallo Herl, Carlos (affiliation not available); Rodríguez-González, Ana (Lund University); Salvanes, Kjell G. (Norwegian School of Economics); Santana, Paula (University of Coimbra); Thuilliez, Josselin (University Paris 1); van Doorslaer, Eddy (Erasmus University Rotterdam); Van Ourti, Tom (Erasmus School of Economics); Winter, Joachim (University of Munich); Wouterse, Bram (Erasmus University Rotterdam); Wuppermann, Amelie (Martin-Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg)
    Abstract: Although there is a large gap between Black and White American life expectancies, the gap fell 48.9% between 1990-2018, mainly due to mortality declines among Black Americans. We examine age-specific mortality trends and racial gaps in life expectancy in rich and poor U.S. areas and with reference to six European countries. Inequalities in life expectancy are starker in the U.S. than in Europe. In 1990 White Americans and Europeans in rich areas had similar overall life expectancy, while life expectancy for White Americans in poor areas was lower. But since then even rich White Americans have lost ground relative to Europeans. Meanwhile, the gap in life expectancy between Black Americans and Europeans decreased by 8.3%. Black life expectancy increased more than White life expectancy in all U.S. areas, but improvements in poorer areas had the greatest impact on the racial life expectancy gap. The causes that contributed the most to Black mortality reductions included: Cancer, homicide, HIV, and causes originating in the fetal or infant period. Life expectancy for both Black and White Americans plateaued or slightly declined after 2012, but this stalling was most evident among Black Americans even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. If improvements had continued at the 1990-2012 rate, the racial gap in life expectancy would have closed by 2036. European life expectancy also stalled after 2014. Still, the comparison with Europe suggests that mortality rates of both Black and White Americans could fall much further across all ages and in both rich and poor areas. Significance Statement From 1990-2018, the Black-White life expectancy gap fell 48.9% though progress stalled after 2012 as life expectancy plateaued or declined. If improvements had continued at the 1990-2012 rate, the racial gap in life expectancy would have closed by 2036. Black life expectancy in 1990 started below European or White American levels but grew at a faster rate: the gap between Europeans and Black Americans decreased by 8.3% between 1990-2018. In 1990 White Americans and Europeans in rich areas had similar life expectancy, while White Americans in poor areas had lower life expectancy than poor Europeans. But all White Americans have lost ground relative to Europeans. Current incomebased life expectancy gaps are starker in the U.S. than in comparable European countries.
    Keywords: life expectancy, racial disparity, area-level socioeconomic status, international comparison
    JEL: I14
    Date: 2021–09
  4. By: Giacomo De Giorgi; Matthew Harding; Gabriel Vasconcelos
    Abstract: Data on hundreds of variables related to individual consumer finance behavior (such as credit card and loan activity) is routinely collected in many countries and plays an important role in lending decisions. We postulate that the detailed nature of this data may be used to predict outcomes in seemingly unrelated domains such as individual health. We build a series of machine learning models to demonstrate that credit report data can be used to predict individual mortality. Variable groups related to credit cards and various loans, mostly unsecured loans, are shown to carry significant predictive power. Lags of these variables are also significant thus indicating that dynamics also matters. Improved mortality predictions based on consumer finance data can have important economic implications in insurance markets but may also raise privacy concerns.
    Date: 2021–11
  5. By: Jorge Miguel Bravo; Mercedes Ayuso; Robert Holzmann; Edward Palmer
    Abstract: Continuous longevity improvements and population ageing have led countries to modify national public pension schemes by increasing the standard and early retirement ages in a discretionary, scheduled, or automatic way, and by making it harder for people to retire prematurely. To this end, countries have adopted alternative retirement age strategies, but our analyses show that the measures taken are often poorly designed and consequently misaligned with the pension scheme’s ultimate goals. In addition, our analyses demonstrate that countries risk falling short of their goals given their use of projection methods that underestimate life expectancy. This paper discusses how to implement automatic indexation of the retirement age to life expectancy developments while respecting the principles of intergenerational actuarial fairness and neutrality among generations. We show that in policy designs in which extended working lives translate into additional pension entitlements, the pension age must be automatically updated to keep the period in retirement constant. Alternatively, policy designs that pursue a fixed replacement rate are consistent with retirement age policies targeting a constant balance between active years in the workforce and years in retirement. The empirical strategy employed to project the relevant cohort life expectancy uses a Bayesian Model Ensemble approach to stochastic mortality modelling to generate forecasts of intergenerationally and actuarially fair pension ages for 23 countries and regions from 2000 to 2050. The empirical results show that the pension age increases needed to accommodate the effect of longevity developments on pay-as-you-go equilibrium and to reinstate equity between generations are sizeable and well beyond those employed and/or legislated in most countries. A new wave of pension reforms may be at the doorsteps.
    Keywords: retirement age, actuarial fairness, intergenerational neutrality, pensions, Bayesian Model Ensemble, population ageing
    JEL: H55 G22 C63 C53 H23
    Date: 2021
  6. By: Giles, John T. (World Bank); Lei, Xiaoyan (Peking University); Wang, Gewei (Peking University); Wang, Yafeng (Peking University); Zhao, Yaohui (Peking University)
    Abstract: This paper documents the patterns and correlates of retirement in China using a nationally representative survey, the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS). After documenting stark differences in retirement ages between urban and rural residents, the paper shows that China's urban residents retire earlier than workers in many OECD countries and that rural residents continue to work until advanced ages. Differences in access to generous pensions and economic resources explain much of the urban-rural difference in retirement rates. The paper suggests that reducing disincentives created by China's Urban Employee Pension system, improving health status, providing childcare and elder care support may all facilitate longer working lives. Given spouse preferences for joint retirement, creating incentives for women to retire later may facilitate longer working lives for both men and women.
    Keywords: retirement, aging, pensions, urban-rural gap, China, CHARLS
    JEL: J26 O15 O17 O53
    Date: 2021–09
  7. By: Pagan, Ricardo; Malo, Miguel
    Abstract: In this article, we analyse loneliness trajectories for older people aged 50 or more in selected European countries by gender. We focus on the relationship between disability and disability trajectories and loneliness trajectories. We use three waves of the longitudinal SHARE database. We find that permanent loneliness is not generalised, but 31 per cent of older males and 44 per cent of females suffer from loneliness in at least one of the three waves. Disability increases loneliness persistence, especially for women. Improvements in disability decrease the risk of loneliness persistence, but this effect is smaller than for disability status and there are no clear differences by gender. The rankings of the country effects on loneliness persistence by gender provide only partial support, with Mediterranean and Eastern European countries having the highest persistence, while the lowest rates are found in Northern countries, as in the previous comparative literature on loneliness.
    Keywords: Loneliness persistence; disability persistence; disability dynamics; aging; cross-national comparison
    JEL: J10 J14 J18
    Date: 2021–11–10
  8. By: Seungjin Han; Josip Lesica
    Abstract: This paper studies excise tax policy that applies different tax rates to differentiated products. We propose a general method, from the revealed preferences perspective, that allows the identification of the policy maker’s unobserved preferences when setting excise tax rates. We use it to evaluate excise beer tax policy in the Canadian province of Ontario, which differentially taxes local craft beer and large manufacturers’ beer. We identify the government’s preferences over the total surplus and net externalities associated with the production and consumption of different types of beer products. The results show that the government believes the positive externality associated with the production of local craft beer, outweighs the negative externality associated with its consumption, whereas it goes the other way around for large manufacturers’ beer. This means that the government’s subjective per-litre cost of reducing the equilibrium consumption through local craft beer is significantly higher than through the large manufacturers’ beer. The observed gap in excise taxes is aligned with the discrepancy in the percentage decreases in equilibrium quantities of two types of beer with respect to a dollar increase in own excise tax, respectively, given different beer market sizes. We also identify the increasing share of local craft beer consumption with respect to household income as a unique source of the regressiveness of the differentiated excise taxes. The regressiveness does not seem large in terms of the extra tax payment imposed on lower-income households even though the regressiveness of the effective tax rate itself is not insignificant.
    Keywords: beer; differentiated excise taxation; net externalities; optimal taxation; revealed preferences; regressiveness of taxation
    JEL: D12 D62 H21 H23
    Date: 2021–11
  9. By: Kirdar, Murat G. (Bogazici University); Koc, Ismet (Hacettepe University); Dayioglu-Tayfur, Meltem (Middle East Technical University)
    Abstract: Although school integration of the children of economic migrants in developed countries is well-studied in the literature, little evidence based on large scale representative data exists on the school integration of refugee children—many of whom live in low- or middle-income countries. This study focuses on Syrian refugee children in Turkey and examines the underlying causes of the native-refugee differences in school enrollment. We also analyze employment and marriage outcomes, as they are potentially jointly determined with schooling. For this purpose, we use the 2018 Turkish Demographic and Health Survey, which includes a representative sample of Syrian refugee households. We find that once a rich set of socioeconomic variables are accounted for, the native-refugee gap in school enrollment drops by half for boys and two-thirds for girls, but the gap persists for both genders. However, once we restrict the sample to refugees who arrive in Turkey at or before age 8 and account for the socioeconomic differences, the native-refugee gap completely vanishes both for boys and girls. In one outcome—in never attending school—the native-refugee gap persists even for children who arrive before age 8. Data for Syrians from the pre-war period suggest that this might be an "ethnic capital" that they bring with them from Syria. Finally, we find that the timing of boys' school drop-out coincides with their entry into the labor market, whereas girls' drop-out mostly takes place earlier than their marriage.
    Keywords: refugees, education, school enrollment, integration, child labor, marriage, Turkey
    JEL: F22 I21 I28 O15
    Date: 2021–09
  10. By: Sudhir Anand
    Abstract: This paper develops the idea of health justice as a plural conception. It draws on the literature on justice from philosophy and economics, and investigates its application and reach in the space of health. Several distinctions are invoked in identifying and contrasting different facets of health justice and injustice. These include active versus passive injustice; process fairness versus substantive justice; comparative versus non comparative justice; compensatory and distributive justice. Within distributive justice, the health implications of alternate principles – viz. equality, priority, sufficiency, and efficiency – are examined and evaluated. Many faces of health justice are thus exposed which help to address the varieties of injustice observed in the health sphere.
    Date: 2021–10–20
  11. By: Gao, Xiaoying (University of York); Davillas, Apostolos (University of East Anglia); Jones, Andrew M. (University of York)
    Abstract: This paper extends the earlier work of Davillas and Jones (2021) on socioeconomic inequality in mental health, measured by the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ), to include the second national lockdown up to March 2021.
    Keywords: COVID-19, health equity; socioeconomic inequality, GHQ, mental health, psychological distress
    JEL: C1 D63 I12 I14
    Date: 2021–10
  12. By: Powdthavee, Nattavudh (University of Warwick); Riyanto, Yohanes E. (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore); Wong, Erwin (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore); Yeo, Jonathan (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore); Chan, Qi Yu (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
    Abstract: With the COVID-19 pandemic still raging and the vaccination program still rolling out, there continues to be an immediate need for public health officials to better understand the mechanisms behind the deep and perpetual divide over face masks in America. Using a random sample of Americans (N=615), following a pre-registered experimental design and analysis plan, we first demonstrated that mask wearers were not innately more cooperative as individuals than non-mask wearers in the Prisoners' Dilemma (PD) game when information about their own and the other person's mask usage was not salient. However, we found strong evidence of in-group favouritism among both mask and non-mask wearers when information about the other partner's mask usage was known. Non-mask wearers were 23 percentage points less likely to cooperate than mask wearers when facing a mask-wearing partner, and 26 percentage points more likely to cooperate than mask wearers when facing a non-mask-wearing partner. Our analysis suggests social identity effects as the primary reason behind people's decision whether to wear face masks during the pandemic.
    Keywords: face mask, COVID-19, cooperation, social identity, prisoners' dilemma
    JEL: C9 I1
    Date: 2021–09
  13. By: Claudio Deiana; Andrea Geraci; Gianluca Mazzarella; Fabio Sabatini
    Abstract: In March 2021, Italian health authorities suspended the Vaxzevria vaccine (VA) for four days over reports of very rare blood disorders among recipients. We exploit the quasi-experimental setting arising from this break to study the drivers of vaccine hesitancy. Before the suspension, the VA vaccination trend followed the same pattern as Pfizer-Biontech (PB). After the suspension, VA and PB injections started to diverge, with VA daily decreasing by almost 60 doses per 100,000 inhabitants for the following three weeks. The resulting vaccination rate was 60 percent lower than the value that would have stemmed from the VA pre-suspension pattern. We show that the slowdown was weaker and less persistent in regions with higher COVID penetration and steadier and more pronounced in regions displaying greater attention to vaccine side e ects as detected through Google searches. The public's interest in vaccine adverse events negatively correlates with COVID cases and deaths across regions.
    Keywords: COVID-19; Vaxzevria vaccine; Vaccine hesitancy; Google Searches
    JEL: I12 I18 L82 L86
    Date: 2021–11
  14. By: Lackner, Mario (JKU University of Linz and Christian-Doppler Lab †Ageing, Health and the Labor Marketâ€); Sunde, Uwe (University of Munich (LMU) and CEPR, London); Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf (JKU University of Linz and Christian-Doppler Lab †Ageing, Health and the Labor Market†and CEPR, London and IHS, Vienna)
    Abstract: The unprecedented consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic have raised concerns about intensified social unrest, but evidence for such a link and the underlying channels is still lacking. We use a unique combination of nationally representative survey data, event data on social unrest, and data on Covid-19 fatalities and unemployment at a weekly resolution to investigate the forces behind social unrest in the context of the strains on public health and the economy due to the pandemic in the USA. The results show that pandemic-related unemployment and Covid-19 fatalities intensified negative emotional stress and led to a deterioration of economic confidence among individuals. The prevalence of negative emotional stress, particularly in economically strained and politically polarized environments, was, in turn, associated with intensified social unrest as measured by political protests. No such link is found for economic perceptions.
    Keywords: economic shocks, Covid-19, civil unrest, political polarization
    Date: 2021–11
  15. By: Frederico Lima; Hibah Khan; Ms. Era Dabla-Norris
    Abstract: The health and economic consequences of COVID-19 are closely tied to individual compliance with recommended protective behaviors. We examine the determinants of this compliance using survey data from the COVID Behavior Tracker for 29 advanced and emerging market economies between March and December 2020. Social distancing behaviors vary significantly by age, gender, occupation, and individual beliefs about COVID-19. In addition, those who trust their government’s response to COVID-19 are significantly more likely to adopt recommended behaviors and to self-isolate if advised, highlighting the need for well-coordinated actions on the health and economic fronts. We also find that mobility restrictions, such as stay-at-home orders, and mask mandates are associated with reduced social interactions and persistent increases in compliance. Together, these drivers account for over two-thirds of the regional differences in compliance, confirming their important role in increasing social distancing and containing the pandemic.
    Keywords: mask mandate; recommended behavior; government policy; COVID behavior tracker; social interaction; COVID-19; Aging; Employment; Asia and Pacific; Northern Europe; Southern Europe
    Date: 2021–05–01
  16. By: Frederico Lima; Alexandre Sollaci; Hibah Khan; Ms. Era Dabla-Norris
    Abstract: Quick vaccine rollouts are crucial for a strong economic recovery, but vaccine hesitancy could prolong the pandemic and the need for social distancing and lockdowns. We use individual-level data from nationally representative surveys developed by YouGov and Imperial College London to empirically examine the determinants of vaccine hesitancy across 17 countries and over time. Vaccine demand depends on demographic features such as age and gender, but also on perceptions about the severity of COVID-19 and side effects of the vaccine, vaccine access, compliance with protective behaviors, overall trust in government, and how information is shared with peers. We then introduce vaccine hesitancy into an extended SIR model to assess its impact on pandemic dynamics. We find that hesitancy can increase COVID-19 infections and deaths significantly if it slows down vaccine rollouts, but has a smaller impact if all willing adults can be immunized rapidly.
    Keywords: vaccine hesitancy; vaccine demand; vaccine rollout; General vaccine acceptance; vaccine intent; COVID-19; Aging; Global
    Date: 2021–05–06
  17. By: Carlos Goncalves; Mr. Bas B. Bakker
    Abstract: Latin America was hit hard by Covid-19, both in terms of lives and livelihoods. Early lockdowns in the second quarter of 2020 prevented an explosion of deaths at the time but did not stop the pandemic from later wreaking havoc in the region. This paper investigates the dynamics of pandemics in Latin America and how it differed from elsewhere. We probe the role of non-pharmaceutical interventions; the effectiveness (or lack of thereof) lock-downs in Latin America; which structural factors contributed to the high death toll in Latin America, and the extent to which the epidemic harmed the economy. Finally, we briefly analyze the roots of the second-waves that started in the fourth quarter of 2020.
    Keywords: later lockdown; dynamics of Covid-19 epidemic; lock-downs in Latin America; modeling lockdown type; lockdowns in Latin America; COVID-19; South America; Caribbean; Europe; Western Europe; Asia and Pacific
    Date: 2021–06–11
  18. By: Bagues, Manuel (University of Warwick); Dimitrova, Velichka (University of Warwick)
    Abstract: We quantify the impact of COVID-19 vaccination on psychological well-being using information from a large-scale panel survey representative of the UK population. Exploiting exogenous variation in the timing of vaccinations, we find that vaccination increases psychological well-being by 0.12 standard deviation, compensating for around one half of the overall decrease caused by the pandemic. This effect persists for at least two months, and it is associated with a decrease in the perceived likelihood of contracting COVID-19 and higher engagement in social activities. The improvement is 1.5 times larger for mentally distressed individuals, supporting the prioritization of this group in vaccination roll-outs.
    Keywords: psychological well-being, COVID-19, vaccination
    JEL: I18 I31
    Date: 2021–11
  19. By: Claudio Deiana; Andrea Geraci; Gianluca Mazzarella; Fabio Sabatini
    Abstract: We show that compensation measures aimed at improving the fairness of the pandemic policy response can unintendedly nudge compliance with restrictive orders. We combine information on the distribution of resources with data tracking citizens' movements through mobile devices and navigation systems across Italian municipalities. To assess the impact of relief measures on compliance, we exploit a sharp kink schedule in the allocation of funds. The empirical analysis provides evidence that mobility decreased with transfers, suggesting that the observance of emergency rules also depends on the fairness of the pandemic policy response.
    Keywords: Compliance; Mobility; Social capital; COVID-19 policy response; Stay-at home orders; Lockdown; Regression Kink Design
    JEL: D60 H30 I38
    Date: 2021–11
  20. By: Nicholas Chiumenti
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic and the policies implemented to limit the spread of the virus brought about changes to domestic migration patterns in New England. Overall, the region lost about 50,000 fewer households to permanent out-migration in 2020 compared with 2019, as measured by United States Postal Service change-of-address requests. Every New England state except Massachusetts either lost fewer households or gained households for the first time since at least 2017. However, counties that added households generally saw an increase of less than 1 percent. The characteristics of a community mattered as to whether it gained or lost households. Communities with more than 1,000 people per square mile lost an average of 3 percent of households in 2020, while those with fewer than 1,000 people gained an average of 2 percent. The size of the college-student population in an area did not have a large effect on net migration, despite the move to online schooling for much of 2020. However, the share of seasonal housing in a community did. The number of households in areas with 25 percent to 50 percent seasonal housing stock grew by almost 2 percent through permanent net migration. Temporary net migration also led to positive net migration overall in much of New England in 2020, indicating that many of the new residents may not remain in their communities for the long term.
    Keywords: COVID-19
    Date: 2021–11–30
  21. By: Couch, Kenneth A. (University of Connecticut); Fairlie, Robert W. (University of California, Santa Cruz); Xu, Huanan (Indiana University)
    Abstract: We explore whether COVID-19 disproportionately affected women in the labor market using CPS data through the end of 2020. We find that male-female gaps in the employment-to-population ratio and hours worked for women with school-age children have widened but not for those with younger children. Triple-difference estimates are consistent with most of the reductions observed for women with school-age children being attributable to additional child care responsibilities (the "COVID motherhood penalty"). Conducting decompositions, we find women had a greater likelihood to telework, higher education levels and a less-impacted occupational distribution, which all contributed to lessening negative impacts relative to men.
    Keywords: COVID-19, Coronavirus, pandemic, female labor supply, gender inequality, child care, motherhood penalty
    JEL: J16 J2 J13
    Date: 2021–11
  22. By: Lei Wang; Yiwei Qian; Nele Warrinnier; Orazio Attanasio; Scott Rozelle; Sean Sylvia
    Abstract: We present evidence from a randomized experiment testing the impacts of a six-month early childhood home-visiting program on child outcomes at school entry. Two and a half years after completion of the program, we find persistent effects on child working memory - a key skill of executive functioning that plays a central role in children’s development of cognitive and socio-emotional skills. We also find that the program had persistent effects on parental time investments and preschool enrolment decisions. Children were enrolled earlier and in higher quality preschools, the latter reflecting a shift in preferences over preschool attributes toward quality. Our findings imply an important role for the availability of high-quality subsequent schooling in sustaining the impacts of early intervention programs.
    Keywords: Early Childhood Development, Parenting, China, Poverty
    JEL: J13 I21 I28 H11
    Date: 2021

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