Chapter

Anticipated and Actual Bequests

Edited by Michael D. Hurd and James P. Smith

in Themes in the Economics of Aging

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print November 2001 | ISBN: 9780226902845
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226903330 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226903330.003.0012
Anticipated and Actual Bequests

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This chapter examines the role of inheritances and bequests in shaping household decisions on wealth accumulation. The chapter is organized as follows. Section 11.2 outlines a model of consumption and saving behavior that will guide the analysis and provide a framework for the validation. Section 11.3 describes the data sets that will be used. Section 11.4 examines the information from exit interviews given by proxy respondents for 774 Asset and Health Dynamics among the Oldest Old (AHEAD) respondents who died after the baseline AHEAD survey. These exit interviews provide, among other things, data about the medical and nonmedical costs associated with illnesses of the respondents and the value and distribution of their estates. Section 11.5 discusses the theoretical and empirical properties of the measure of bequest expectations. The data on actual and anticipated bequests are used in Section 11.6 to construct an index of saving intentions. The results suggest that people plan to dissave before they die. Section 11.7 provides a conclusion and summary. A commentary is also included at the end of the chapter.

Keywords: inheritance; bequest; wealth accumulation; consumption; savings

Chapter.  13331 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economics

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