We test whether income inequality undermines female and male life expectancy in the United States. We employ data for all 50 states and the District of Columbia and two-way fixed effects to model state-level average life expectancy as a function of multiple income inequality measures and time-varying characteristics. We find that state-level income inequality is inversely associated with female and male life expectancy. We observe this general pattern across four measures of income inequality and under the rigorous conditions of state-specific and year-specific fixed effects. If income inequality undermines life expectancy, redistribution policies could actually improve the health of states. (Author abstract)
Bring out your dead!: A study of income inequality and life expectancy in the United States, 2000–2010
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