Why Does Consumption Fluctuate in Old Age and How Should the Government Insure it?
Abstract: In old age, consumption can fluctuate because of shocks to available resources and because health shocks affect utility from consumption. We find that even temporary drops in income and health are associated with drops in consumption and most of the effect of temporary drops in health on consumption stems from the reduction in the marginal utility from consumption that they generate. More precisely, after a health shock, richer households adjust their consumption of luxury goods because their utility of consuming them changes. Poorer households, instead, adjust both their necessary and luxury consumption because of changing resources and utility from consumption.
File(s): File format is application/pdf https://www.minneapolisfed.org/institute/working-papers-institute/iwp40.pdf
Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis
Part of Series: Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute Working Papers
Publication Date: 2020-10-23