Intergenerational Transfers and Family Behavior: Children, spouses, siblings, parents and parents-in-law

TitleIntergenerational Transfers and Family Behavior: Children, spouses, siblings, parents and parents-in-law
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication2000
AuthorsZissimopoulos, JM
Date Published2000
UniversityUniversity of California, Los Angeles
KeywordsAdult children, Employment and Labor Force
Abstract

Changes in the age structure of the population have generated concern for maintaining the welfare of a growing elderly population, and have increased the importance of understanding the incentives underlying family assistance. This dissertation analyzes financial and time transfers among family members that include an adult child and her spouse, her and her spouse's elderly parents and their siblings. Utilizing the 1992 and 1994 survey waves of the Health and Retirement Study, I generate stylized facts about transfer patterns and use them to understand decision-making within a household and links between households. The data reveal striking asymmetries in transfers from a middle-aged, married couple to a husband's and a wife's elderly parents. The findings in chapter 1 suggest transfer patterns reflect differences in the opportunity cost of time between husbands and wives, in a spouse's productivity in caring for parents and parents-in-law, and the allocation of resources within the household. They also suggest that labor market rigidities may constrain individuals from substituting money for time help. Many children are involved in supporting parents. Chapter 2 explores whether an elderly parent's welfare is a pure public good. If so, children may choose to free ride on the contributions of their siblings and will under- provide for parents. The results suggest parent welfare is not a pure public good among siblings and that a parent with one child will receive less support than one with multiple children. Intergenerational transfers raise the question of whether the parents of a married child are contributing to the welfare of the parents of the child's spouse. In chapter 3, i find that assortative mating magnifies intergenerational transmissions of wealth, though not sufficiently to keep wealth classes separate through time. I find that financial transfers between parents and married children link the resources of the child's parents and parents-in-law.

URLDatabase ID: DAI-A 61/07, p. 2855, Jan 2001.
Endnote Keywords

Sociology, Individual and Family Studies (0628)

Endnote ID

5034

Endnote Author Address

ISBN 0-599-85085-X

Short TitleIntergenerational Transfers and Family Behavior: Children, spouses, siblings, parents and parents-in-law
Citation Key6188