APRIL 17th, Economics Dept. Room 1002 from 2:30p-4:00p

Till Bad Health Do us Part? Gender Differences in Spousal Abandonment after Health Shocks

We use a sample of married couples interviewed between 1996 and 2010 for the Health and Retirement Study to investigate the impact of health shocks on marital stability. We find suggestive evidence that health shocks are associated with a greater likelihood of divorce or separation. In exploring gender differences, we find strong evidence that the risk of marital disruption increases with a wife-specific health shock only. Marriages in which wives experience a health shock have a 1.5 percentage point increased likelihood of failing. This is an increased risk of divorce of about 30 percent. We find no such effect when a husband has a health shock. Further investigation suggests the gender differential we observe may be economically motivated as our results are driven by households where one or both spouses are in the labor force and those at the top quartile of wealth.

Yaa Akosa Antwi is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. She received her PhD in Applied Economics and Management from Carnegie Mellon University in 2010. Her research has focused on how reimbursement incentives affect hospital and physician behavior and the impact of health insurance expansions on coverage and use of medical care. Her research has received support by grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Upjohn Institute.


Brown Bag Schedule

April 17, 2015 Presentation by Mohammad Ali
May 1, 2015 Presentation by Michael Hensley


April 20, 2015 Economics of Marijuana
April 29, 2015 Induction Ceremony/Announcement of 2015-2016 Officers
May 9, 2015 Economics Department Convocation

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