Attitude, Health

Losing Money Can Cost You Your Life

Before you check the progress of your 401K, a few words from researchers at the University of Michigan: people over the age of 50 who suffer a catastrophic loss of wealth have a 50-percent higher risk of dying than those who do not have such loss. Wait, it gets worse. The finding applies to everyone over the age of 50, rich and poor. A University of Michigan news release reports that researchers at the school studied the health of 8,714 people between the ages of 51 and 61. Ninety percent reported having wealth, and 2,430, or 26 percent, experienced a negative wealth shock during that period, while 5,535 had continuously positive wealth without shock.┬áThe researchers found that those who had negative wealth shocks were more likely to be female, of nonwhite race/ethnicity, have lower levels of household income and net worth and have poor health. The 50 percent increased risk of mortality for those who experienced wealth shock was similar to the 67-percent increased risk of individuals living in poverty who have no net worth. “We looked at different levels of wealth and income somebody had prior to losing their wealth,” said lead researcher Lindsay Pool. “It didn’t seem to matter: You could lose a million dollars or $50,000 dollars but if that’s all you have, that is important to you.”

 

 

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