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The Intergenerational Transmission of Health in the United States: A Latent Variables Analysis

Ashley Wong (), Bhashkar Mazumder () and Timothy Halliday
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Ashley Wong: Northwestern University

No 201903, Working Papers from University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics

Abstract: Social scientists have long documented that many components of socioeconomic status such as income and education have strong ties across generations. However, health status, arguably a more critical component of welfare, has largely been ignored. We fill this void by providing the first estimates of the Intergenerational Health Association (IHA) that are explicitly based on a non-linear latent variable model. Adjusting for only age and gender, we estimate an IHA of 0.3 indicating that about one third of a parent's health status gets transmitted to their children. Once we add additional mediators to the model, we show that education, and particularly children's education, is an important transmission channel in that it reduces the IHA by one third. Finally, we show that estimates of the IHA from non-linear models are only moderately higher than those from linear models, while rank-based mobility estimates are identical.

Keywords: Health; Mobility; Latent Variable; Inequality (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I1 I14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019-02
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea and nep-ltv
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http://www.economics.hawaii.edu/research/workingpapers/WP_19-03.pdf First version, 2019 (application/pdf)

Related works:
Journal Article: The intergenerational transmission of health in the United States: A latent variables analysis (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: The Intergenerational Transmission of Health in the United States: A Latent Variables Analysis (2019) Downloads
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