The effect of coresidence on parental health in Japan

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, 2015, 35 pp. 1 - 22
Issue Date:
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© 2014 Elsevier Inc. The empirical evidence of the effect of intergenerational coresidence by elderly parents and their adult children on parental health remains inconclusive. This study provides a new estimate of the coresidence effect by addressing non-random selection and heterogeneity in the treatment effect. Examination of Japanese data reveals: (i) an insignificant, negative average coresidence effect; (ii) a significant, negative coresidence effect on the treated; and (iii) that parents with unmet care needs and limited resources, typically widowed, disabled mothers, are most likely to suffer from a significant, negative coresidence effect. The results support the theory that coresidence may worsen elderly parents' health because care burdens on their adult children create disincentives for the parents to invest in longevity. The significant heterogeneity in the coresidence effect suggests potential scope for a better-targeted long-term care program.
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