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Attrition in Models of Intergenerational Links Using the PSID with Extensions to Health and to Sibling Models

John Fitzgerald ()

The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, 2011, vol. 11, issue 3, 1-63

Abstract: Selective attrition potentially biases estimation of intergenerational links in health and economic status. This paper documents attrition in the PSID through 2007 for a cohort of children, and investigates attrition bias in intergenerational models predicting adult health, education and earnings, including models based on sibling differences. Although attrition affects unconditional means, the weighted PSID generally maintains its representativeness along key dimensions in comparison to the National Health Interview Survey. Using PSID, sibling correlations in outcomes and father-son correlations in earnings are not significantly affected by attrition. Models of intergenerational links with covariates yield more mixed results with females showing few robust impacts of attrition and males showing potential attrition bias for education and earnings outcomes. For adult health outcomes conditional on child background, neither gender shows significant impacts of attrition for the age ranges and models considered here. Sibling models do not produce robustly higher attrition impacts than individual models.

Date: 2011
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