NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Mateusz Filipski

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December 2011The Best of Times, the Worst of Times: Understanding Pro-cyclical Mortality
with Ann Huff Stevens, Douglas L. Miller, Marianne E. Page: w17657
A growing literature documents cyclical movements in mortality and health. We examine this pattern more closely and attempt to identify the mechanisms behind it. Specifically, we distinguish between mechanisms that rely on fluctuations in own employment or time use and those involving factors that are external to the individual. Our investigation suggests that changes in individuals’ own behavior contribute very little to pro-cyclical mortality. Looking across broad age and gender groups, we find that own-group employment rates are not systematically related to own-group mortality. In addition, we find that most of the additional deaths that occur during times of economic growth are among the elderly, particularly elderly women, who have limited labor force attachment. Focusing on mo...

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