Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 197–231 | Cite as

Pauvreté, Egalité, Mortalité: mortality (in)equality in France and the United States

  • Janet CurrieEmail author
  • Hannes Schwandt
  • Josselin Thuilliez
Original Paper


We develop a method for comparing levels and trends in inequality in mortality in the United States and France between 1990 and 2010 in a similar framework. The comparison shows that while income inequality has increased in both the United States and France, inequality in mortality in France remained remarkably low and stable. In the United States, inequality in mortality increased for older groups (especially women) while it decreased for children and young adults. These patterns highlight the fact that despite the strong cross-sectional relationship between income and health, there is no necessary connection between changes in income inequality and changes in health inequality.


France Income Inequality Mortality Health inequality 

JEL classification

I14 I18 I12 



We thank the Center for Health and Wellbeing at Princeton University for supporting this research and CépiDc for providing the data used in the analysis. Josselin Thuilliez benefited from a research fellowship at Princeton University and a Fulbright fellowship (2016–2017). We are also thankful to Magali Barbieri, Pierre-Yves Geoffard, Jean-Paul Moatti, and two anonymous referees for useful comments.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to report.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Health and WellbeingPrinceton UniversityPrincetonUSA
  2. 2.National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)CambridgeUSA
  3. 3.Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)BonnGermany
  4. 4.School of Education and Social PolicyNorthwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA
  5. 5.Stanford Institute for Policy Research (SIEPR)StanfordUSA
  6. 6.CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)Centre d’économie de la SorbonneParisFrance

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