The economic status of older people’s households in urban and rural settings in Peru, Mexico and China: a 10/66 INDEP study cross-sectional survey

Martin J Prince, Peter Lloyd-Sherlock, Mariella Guerra, Yueqin Huang, Ana Luisa Sosa, Richard Uwakwe, Isaac Acosta, Zhaorui Liu, Sara Gallardo, Maelenn Guerchet, Rosie Mayston, Veronica Montes de Oca, Hong Wang, Peter Ezeah

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Few data are available from middle income countries regarding economic circumstances of households in which older people live. Many such settings have experienced rapid demographic, social and economic change, alongside increasing pension coverage. Population-based household surveys in rural and urban catchment areas in Peru, Mexico and China. Participating households were selected from all households with older residents. Descriptive analyses were weighted back for sampling fractions and non-response. Household income and consumption were estimated from a household key informant interview. 877 Household interviews (3177 residents). Response rate 68 %. Household income and consumption correlated plausibly with other economic wellbeing indicators. Household Incomes varied considerably within and between sites. While multigenerational households were the norm, older resident’s incomes accounted for a high proportion of household income, and older people were particularly likely to pool income. Differences in the coverage and value of pensions were a major source of variation in household income among sites. There was a small, consistent inverse association between household pension income and labour force participation of younger adult co-residents. The effect of pension income on older adults’ labour force participation was less clear-cut. Historical linkage of social protection to formal employment may have contributed to profound late-life socioeconomic inequalities. Strategies to formalise the informal economy, alongside increases in the coverage and value of non-contributory pensions and transfers would help to address this problem.
Original languageEnglish
Article number258
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2016


  • Ageing
  • Developing countries
  • Mexico
  • Peru
  • China
  • Pensions
  • Economic status

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