Coherent mortality forecasting in an economic crisis context

Filipe Ribeiro, Universidade de Évora

The economic crisis witnessed in Europe, especially in the south, might disturb demographic evolutionary trends and affect negatively the extraordinary mortality convergence across industrialized countries to low mortality rates. We make use of Oeppen’s (2008) proposal of expressing the Lee-Carter method in compositional form to forecast mortality trends by cause of death over time and to evaluate the impact of the economic crisis in human lifespan and causes of death. For different selected countries we study the evolution of observed/estimated mortality patterns and its impact on life expectancy dynamics, gender differences, causes of death (CODs), and mortality improvement or deterioration at different ages. Preliminary results revealed high accuracy and that the economic crisis established in Europe in 2008 might effectively decelerate life expectancy increase over time (especially in Portugal), but it’s very likely that males keep catching up. With this study we intend not only to study present mortality trends, but also produce a coherent mortality forecast, for overall mortality and by COD, in order to answer to three main hypotheses: after the economic crisis in Europe 1) Can we expect life expectancy at birth to increase at the same rate than in the past?, 2) Is this crisis affecting negatively the recent mortality convergence between males and females?, 3) Can we observe major changes across CODs?

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Presented in Poster Session 1