The Impact of Work and Family Trajectories on Financial Well-Being at Older Ages

John R. Warren, University of Minnesota
James Raymo, University of Wisconsin at Madison

Using data from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, we examine relationships between trajectories of work and family experiences across the life course and four measures of financial well-being at ages 64-65: (a) total personal income, (b) total household income, (c) health insurance coverage, and (d) household net worth. We construct work and family trajectories using group-based trajectory modeling techniques (finite mixture models) to characterize the trajectories of family circumstances and transitions from birth through age 65 and trajectories of labor force experiences from age 36 through age 65. Preliminary estimates (conducted separately for men and women) indicate that latent work and family trajectories are significantly associated with financial well-being net of more temporally proximate correlates, including work and family circumstances at age 53-54. Trajectories characterized by stable full-time employment and stable marriage across the life course are particularly predictive of more favorable economic circumstances at older ages

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Presented in Session 193: The Dynamics of SES and Health