Economic shocks on subjective well-being: re-assessing the determinants of life-satisfaction after the 2008 financial crisis
The paper investigates the extent to which life-satisfaction is biased by peer-comparison by looking at the relative value attached to the different domains of life-satisfaction, as suggested by Easterlin (Economics and happiness: framing the analysis, Oxford University Press, New York, 2005), by social group. We postulate that group membership influences the ranking of the satisfaction domains affecting subjective well-being which allows individuals to go back to their individual threshold over time. Using ordered probit models with random effects, the evidence for professional (self-employed vs. employee) and social (male vs. female) groups using the British Household Panel Survey and Understanding Society—UK Household Longitudinal Study from 1996 to 2014 shows that the ranking of the satisfaction domains is group-based suggesting a “keeping up with the Joneses” effect linked to the housing bubble.
Journal of Happiness Studies
Volume and page numbers
20 , 1041 -1055
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