Test-Retest Reliability of Subjective Survival Expectations

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

Abstract

This paper analyzes the test-retest reliability of subjective survival expectations.
Using a nationally representative sample from the Netherlands, we compare probabilities reported by the same individuals in two different surveys that were fielded in the same month. We evaluate reliability both at the level of reported probabilities and through a model that relates expectations to socio-demographic variables. Test-retest correlations of survival probabilities are between 0.5 and 0.7, which is similar to subjective well-being (Krueger and Schkade, 2008). Only 20% of probabilities are equal across surveys, but up to 61-77% are consistent once we account for rounding. Models that analyze all probabilities jointly reveal similar associations between covariates and the hazard of death in test and retest datasets. Moreover, expectations are persistent at the level of the individual and this unobserved heterogeneity is strongly correlated across surveys (r 0.8-0.9). Finally, we use a life-cycle model to map survival expectations into simulated wealth and labor supply. Though wealth accumulation is sensitive to survival expectations, simulated probabilities from a model that corrects for rounding are sufficiently reliable to yield reliable wealth proles. Taken together this evidence supports the reliability of subjective survival expectations.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationTilburg
PublisherCentER, Center for Economic Research
Number of pages49
Volume2017-045
Publication statusPublished - 7 Nov 2017

Publication series

NameCentER Discussion Paper
Volume2017-045

Fingerprint

Wealth
Unobserved heterogeneity
Life-cycle model
Survival probability
Demographic variables
Labor supply
Wealth accumulation
Subjective well-being
Hazard
The Netherlands
Covariates

Keywords

  • subjective expectations
  • test-retest reliability
  • life-cycle model
  • rounding

Cite this

de Bresser, J. (2017). Test-Retest Reliability of Subjective Survival Expectations. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2017-045). Tilburg: CentER, Center for Economic Research.
de Bresser, Jochem. / Test-Retest Reliability of Subjective Survival Expectations. Tilburg : CentER, Center for Economic Research, 2017. (CentER Discussion Paper).
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de Bresser, J 2017 'Test-Retest Reliability of Subjective Survival Expectations' CentER Discussion Paper, vol. 2017-045, CentER, Center for Economic Research, Tilburg.

Test-Retest Reliability of Subjective Survival Expectations. / de Bresser, Jochem.

Tilburg : CentER, Center for Economic Research, 2017. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2017-045).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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AB - This paper analyzes the test-retest reliability of subjective survival expectations.Using a nationally representative sample from the Netherlands, we compare probabilities reported by the same individuals in two different surveys that were fielded in the same month. We evaluate reliability both at the level of reported probabilities and through a model that relates expectations to socio-demographic variables. Test-retest correlations of survival probabilities are between 0.5 and 0.7, which is similar to subjective well-being (Krueger and Schkade, 2008). Only 20% of probabilities are equal across surveys, but up to 61-77% are consistent once we account for rounding. Models that analyze all probabilities jointly reveal similar associations between covariates and the hazard of death in test and retest datasets. Moreover, expectations are persistent at the level of the individual and this unobserved heterogeneity is strongly correlated across surveys (r 0.8-0.9). Finally, we use a life-cycle model to map survival expectations into simulated wealth and labor supply. Though wealth accumulation is sensitive to survival expectations, simulated probabilities from a model that corrects for rounding are sufficiently reliable to yield reliable wealth proles. Taken together this evidence supports the reliability of subjective survival expectations.

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de Bresser J. Test-Retest Reliability of Subjective Survival Expectations. Tilburg: CentER, Center for Economic Research. 2017 Nov 7. (CentER Discussion Paper).