EconStor >
Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (DIW), Berlin >
DIW-Diskussionspapiere >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:

http://hdl.handle.net/10419/18286
  
Title:The dead anyway effect revis(it)ed PDF Logo
Authors:Breyer, Friedrich
Felder, Stefan
Issue Date:2002
Series/Report no.:DIW-Diskussionspapiere 302
Abstract:In the expected-utility theory of the monetary value of a statistical life, the so-called "dead-anyway" effect discovered by Pratt and Zeckhauser (1996) asserts that an individuals' willingness to pay (WTP) for small reductions in mortality risk increases with the initial level of risk. Their reasoning is based on differences in the marginal utility of wealth between the two states of nature: life and death. However, this explanation is based on the absence of markets for contingent claims, i.e. annuities and life insurance. This paper reexamines the "dead-anyway" effect and establishes two main results: first, for a risk-averse individual without a bequest motive, marginal WTP for survival does increase with the level of risk but when insurance markets are perfect, this occurs for a different reason than given by Pratt and Zeckhauser. Secondly, when the individual has a bequest motive and is endowed with a sufficient amount of non-inheritable capital, the effect of initial risk on WTP for survival is reversed: the higher initial risk the lower the value of a statistical life.
Subjects:Value of life
expected utility
willingness to pay
insurance markets
JEL:D8
H43
I18
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:Publikationen von Forscherinnen und Forschern des DIW
DIW-Diskussionspapiere

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat
dp302.pdf330.49 kBAdobe PDF
No. of Downloads: Counter Stats
Download bibliographical data as: BibTeX
Share on:http://hdl.handle.net/10419/18286

Items in EconStor are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.