Length of Life and Wealth of Retired German Men in 2003

Vladimir Shkolnikov, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research
Rembrandt Scholz, Rostock Center for the Study of Demographic Change
Dmitri A. Jdanov, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research
Michael Stegmann, Deutsche Rentenversicherung Bund
Hans-Martin von Gaudecker, University of Mannheim

Data on mortality by socioeconomic group is not available in Germany due to data protection regulations. Existing estimates originate from sample surveys. The present study aims at closing this gap by estimating mortality of the German male population aged 65+ from an unusual data source. The data come from the German Union of Pension Systems (VDR) and cover over 95% of Germans aged 65+. The 2003 data were provided in the frequency format and classified by age, type of medical insurance, broad professional group, place of residence, and number of the pension credit points. The latter reflects income accumulated over working lives. Estimates of life expectancy and regression-based and empirical mortality rate ratios outline contours of variation across socioeconomic categories. The range of multivariate variation between the extreme groups is 2.5 to 3 fold in terms of relative mortality and is close to 6 years in terms of life expectancy 65.

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Presented in Session 140: Socioeconomic Status and Health: International Perspectives