NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Insurance in extended family networks

Orazio Attanasio, Costas Meghir, Corina Mommaerts

NBER Working Paper No. 21059
Issued in April 2015
NBER Program(s):LS, PE

We investigate partial insurance and group risk sharing in extended family networks. Our approach is based on decomposing income shocks into group aggregate and idiosyncratic components, allowing us to measure the extent to which each is insured, having accounted for public insurance programs. We apply our framework to extended family networks in the United States by exploiting the unique intergenerational structure of the PSID. We find that over 60% of shocks to household income are potentially insurable within family networks. However, we find little evidence that the extended family provides insurance for such idiosyncratic shocks.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w21059

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