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This paper investigates the mechanisms behind the health effects of retirement. Using a Regression Discontinuity Design to exploit financial incentives in the German pension system for identification, I find that retirement improves subjective health status and mental health, while also reducing outpatient care utilization. I explore a wide range of health behaviors, time use, and effect heterogeneity as potential mechanisms. Relief from work-related stress and strain, increased sleep duration as well as more frequent physical exercise seem to be key mechanisms through which retirement affects health.

Original publication

DOI

10.1016/j.jhealeco.2015.05.001

Type

Journal

J Health Econ

Publication Date

09/2015

Volume

43

Pages

1 - 12

Keywords

Health, Health behavior, Healthcare, Regression Discontinuity Design, Retirement