Banks J., Bassoli E., Mammi I. (2019).

Changing Risk Preferences at Older Ages. Dipartimento di Economia – Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia, vol. 01/WP/2019 (ISSN 1827-3580)



This paper investigates risk preference at older ages in 14 European countries. Older individuals report greater risk aversion. Using the longitudinal nature of the data we are able to show this relationship between risk preferences and age is not due to cohort effects or selective mortality. We also show, however, that on average roughly forty percent of this overall age effect is actually due to life events such as retirement, health shocks and widowhood or marital change that occur increasingly as individuals age. These life events are a particularly important explanation of the age `effect’ for women and for the age group 50-64.