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Family Events and Timing of Intergenerational Transfers

SOEPpapers 327

Thomas Leopold, Thorsten Schneider


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This research investigates how family events in adult children's lives influence the timing of their parents' financial transfers. We draw on retrospective data collected by the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) and use event history models to study the effects of marriage, divorce, and childbirth on receiving large gifts from parents. We find increased chances of receiving gifts of houses or land at marriage and in the following years, at childbirth, but not at divorce. Large gifts of money are received in the year of marriage and also in the year of divorce. Our findings, on the onehand, indicate that parental gifts are triggered by adult children's economic need. On the other hand, they point to a plurality of givers' transfer motives and highlight the meanings of different types of wealth for parents, adult children, andtheir relationships.

Topics: Consumers, Family

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