nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2007‒10‒20
seven papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Beyond the Health Concentration Index: An Atkinson Alternative for the Measurement of the Socioeconomic Inequality of Health By Erreygers G.
  2. Overweight in Adolescents: Implications for Health Expenditures By Alan C. Monheit; Jessica P. Vistnes; Jeannette A. Rogowski
  3. Wages, Violence and Health in the Household By Anna Aizer
  4. The Income Gradient in Children's Health: A Comment on Currie, Shields and Wheatley Price By Anne Case; Diana Lee; Christina Paxson
  5. Is Unemployment More Costly Than Inflation? By David G. Blanchflower
  6. Fear, Unemployment and Migration By David G. Blanchflower; Chris Shadforth
  7. Inequidades socioeconómicas en el uso de servicios sanitarios del adulto mayor montevideano By Ana Inés Balsa; Daniel Ferrés; Máximo Rossi; Patricia Triunfo

  1. By: Erreygers G.
    Abstract: The Health Concentration Index is a frequently used indicator for the measurement of the socioeconomic inequality of health. This note starts from a discussion of some of the weaknesses of this index. It then presents two possible alternative measures. The .first is an adaptation of the Concentration Index. The second and more important of the two is constructed by following an Atkinson approach.
    Date: 2006–11
  2. By: Alan C. Monheit; Jessica P. Vistnes; Jeannette A. Rogowski
    Abstract: We consider two compelling research questions raised by the increased prevalence of overweight among adolescents. First, what factors explain variation in adolescent bodyweight and the likelihood of being overweight? Next, do overweight adolescents incur greater health care expenditures compared to those of normal weight? We address the former question by examining the contribution of individual characteristics, economic factors, parental and family attributes, and neighborhood characteristics to variation in these bodyweight outcomes. For the second question, we estimate a two-part, generalized linear model of health spending. Using data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, our econometric analyses indicate that adolescent bodyweight and the likelihood of being overweight are strongly associated with parental bodyweight, parental education, parental smoking behavior, and neighborhood attributes such as the availability of fresh food markets and convenience/snack food outlets, and neighborhood safety and material deprivation. Our expenditure model indicates that overweight females have annual expenditures that exceed those of normal weight by nearly $800 with part of the disparity explained by differences in mental health expenditures. We use both sets of empirical results to draw implications for policies to address adolescent overweight.
    JEL: I1
    Date: 2007–10
  3. By: Anna Aizer
    Abstract: Three quarters of all violence against women is perpetrated by domestic partners. I study both the economic causes and consequences of domestic violence. I find that decreases in the male-female wage gap reduce violence against women, consistent with a household bargaining model. The relationship between the wage gap and violence suggests that reductions in violence may provide an alternative explanation for the well-established finding that child health improves when mothers control a greater share of the household resources. Using instrumental variable and propsensity score techniques to control for selection into violent relationships, I find that violence against pregnant women negatively affects the health of their children at birth. This work sheds new light on the health production process as well as observed income gradients in health and suggests that in addition to addressing concerns of equity, pay parity can also improve the health of American women and children via reductions in violence.
    JEL: I12 J12 J13 J16
    Date: 2007–10
  4. By: Anne Case; Diana Lee; Christina Paxson
    Abstract: This paper reexamines differences found between income gradients in American and English children's health, in results originally published by Case, Lubotsky and Paxson (2002) for the US, and by Currie, Shields and Wheatley Price (2007) for England. We find that, when the English sample is expanded by adding three years of data, and is compared to American data from the same time period, the income gradient in children's health increases with age by the same amount in the two countries. In addition, we find that Currie, Shields and Wheatley Price's measures of chronic conditions from the Health Survey of England were incorrectly coded. Using correctly coded data, we find that the effects of chronic conditions on health status are larger in the English sample than in the American sample, and that income plays a larger role in buffering children's health from the effects of chronic conditions in England. We find no evidence that the British National Health Service, with its focus on free services and equal access, prevents the association between health and income from becoming more pronounced as children grow older.
    JEL: D1 I1
    Date: 2007–10
  5. By: David G. Blanchflower
    Abstract: Previous literature has found that both unemployment and inflation lower happiness. This paper extends the literature by looking at more countries over a longer time period. It also considers the impacts on happiness of GDP per capita and interest rates. I find, conventionally, that both higher unemployment and higher inflation lower happiness. Interest rates are also found to enter happiness equations negatively. Changes in GDP per capita have little impact on more economically developed countries, but do have a positive impact in the poorest countries -- consistent with the Easterlin hypothesis. I find that unemployment depresses well-being more than inflation. The least educated and the old are more concerned about unemployment than inflation. Conversely, the young and the most educated are more concerned about inflation. An individual's experience of high inflation over their adult lifetime lowers their current happiness over and above the effects from inflation and unemployment. Unemployment appears to be more costly than inflation in terms of its impact on wellbeing.
    JEL: E24 E31
    Date: 2007–10
  6. By: David G. Blanchflower; Chris Shadforth
    Abstract: UK population growth over the past thirty-five years has been remarkably low in comparison with other countries; the population grew by just 7% between 1971 and 2004, less than all the other EU15 countries. The UK population has grown at a faster pace since the turn of the millennium. Both the inflow and outflow rates have risen, but the inflow rate has risen more rapidly recently, with an influx of workers from Eastern European. The propensity to come to the UK to work is higher the lower is a) GDP per capita b) life satisfaction in each of the East European countries. There is reason to believe that the majority of those who have arrived in the UK from Eastern Europe have not come permanently. When surveyed only 9% said they expected to stay for more than two years. Hence, in our view it is inappropriate to call them migrants, whereas in fact they should more appropriately be considered temporary or guest workers. There is evidence that, as a result of this increase in the flow of workers from Eastern Europe, the fear of unemployment has risen in the UK which appears to have contained wage pressures. We argue that the influx of workers from Eastern Europe has tended to increase supply by more than it has increased demand in the UK (in the short run). We argue that this has acted to reduce inflationary pressures and reduce the natural rate of unemployment.
    JEL: J31 J61
    Date: 2007–10
  7. By: Ana Inés Balsa (Departamento de Economía, Universidad de Montevideo; Health Economics Research Group, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA); Daniel Ferrés (Departamento de Economía, Universidad de Montevideo); Máximo Rossi (Departamento de Economía, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la República); Patricia Triunfo (Departamento de Economía, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la República)
    Abstract: The aim of this work is to analyse the socio-economic associated inequity in the use of health care services among older adults in Montevideo, capital city of Uruguay, based on data from the SABE survey in the years 1999-2000. We impute the equivalent household income through the use of the ECH (Household Continuous Survey) of the Statistics National Institute (INE). Considering a wide range of access, quality, and use of health care services indicators, we attempt to reduce the probable biases that arise from the fact that morbidity and use of health care services variables are measured contemporaneously. Also, we correct for the potential endogeneity of income and health by the use of Instrumental Variables. After the standardization of the use of services by necessity, we find horizontal inequity favouring the older adults with a higher socio-economic level, in the quality of access to the medical consultation (time to arrival and time to being attended), in the probability of having had a consultation in the last four and twelve months, and in the use of preventive services (mammography, Papanicolau, and prostate examination). The latter, show the higher levels of inequity. Through the Instrumental Variable analysis we deduce that inequity would be underestimated if endogeneity is not corrected for.
    Keywords: health inequity, concentration indexes, older adults
    JEL: I10 I18 I19
    Date: 2007–10

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