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Author:French, Eric 

Journal Article
Medicaid and the elderly

In 2009, Medicaid spent over $75 billion on 5.3 million elderly beneficiaries. This article describes the Medicaid rules for the elderly and discusses their economic implications.
Economic Perspectives , Volume 36 , Issue Q I , Pages 17-34

Working Paper
Life expectancy and old age savings

Rich people, women, and healthy people live longer. We document that this heterogeneity in life expectancy is large. We use an estimated structural model to assess the impact of life expectancy variation on the elderly?s savings. We find that the differences in life expectancy related to observable factors such as health, gender, and income have large effects on savings, and that these factors contribute by similar amounts. We also show that the risk of outliving one?s expected lifespan has a large effect on the elderly?s saving behavior.
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-08-18

Working Paper
The effects of health insurance and self-insurance on retirement behavior

Using an estimable dynamic programming model of retirement behavior, this paper assesses the relative importance of Medicare and Social Security in determining job exit rates at age 65. Of central importance is whether individuals value health insurance benefits not just for the reduction in average medical expenses, but also for the reduction in the volatility of medical expenses. To address this problem the model accounts explicitly for the effects of health cost volatility and health insurance on retirement behavior. By including a savings decision within the model, we allow for the ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-01-19

Newsletter
Savings after Retirement: A Survey

Retired U.S. households, especially those with high income, decumulate their assets more slowly than implied by the basic life cycle model. The observed patterns of out-of-pocket medical expenses, which rise quickly with age and income during retirement, and longevity, which also rises with income, can explain a significant portion of U.S. retirement saving. However, more work is needed to disentangle these precautionary motives from other motives, such as the desire to leave bequests.
Chicago Fed Letter

Newsletter
Is there still an investment overhang, and if so, should we worry about it?

Chicago Fed Letter , Issue May

Working Paper
The effects of progressive taxation on labor supply when hours and wages are jointly determined

This paper extends a standard intertemporal labor supply model to account for progressive taxation as well as the joint determination of hourly wages and hours worked. We show, qualitatively and quantitatively, that these two factors have important implications for estimating the intertemporal elasticity of substitution. Furthermore, we show how to use this corrected parameter to interpret the labor supply response to a tax change. Failure to account for wage-hours ties within a progressive tax system leads to an hours response to a change in marginal tax rates that may be biased downwards by ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-02-22

Journal Article
You can't take it with you: asset run-down at the end of the life cycle

This article presents evidence on the extent to which households run down their assets after retirement. The authors show that, once corrections are made for several econometric problems, households engage in very little asset decumulation after retirement.
Economic Perspectives , Volume 28 , Issue Q III , Pages 40-54

Journal Article
Asset rundown after retirement: the importance of rate of return shocks

The authors provide evidence that households run down their assets after retirement by tracking a group of elderly households over the 1996?2004 period. They find that assets decline for these households approaching the end of the life cycle. Had there not been a run-up in asset prices due in large part to a historically remarkable rise in housing prices, assets would have declined even faster.
Economic Perspectives , Volume 31 , Issue Q II

Journal Article
The Lifetime Medical Spending of Retirees

Using dynamic models of health, mortality, and out-of-pocket medical spending (both inclusive and net of Medicaid payments), we estimate the distribution of lifetime medical spending that retired US households face over the remainder of their lives. We find that households who turned 70 in 1992 will, on average, incur $122,000 in medical spending, including Medicaid payments, over their remaining lives. At the top tail, 5 percent of households will incur more than $300,000 and 1 percent of households will incur over $600,000 in medical spending inclusive of Medicaid. The level and the ...
Economic Quarterly , Issue 3Q , Pages 103-135

Working Paper
Identification of models of the labor market

This chapter discusses identification of common selection models of the labor market. We start with the classic Roy model and show how it can be identified with exclusion restrictions. We then extend the argument to the generalized Roy model, treatment effect models, duration models, search models, and dynamic discrete choice models. In all cases, key ingredients for identification are exclusion restrictions and support conditions.
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2010-08

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