Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #60--November 22, 2000

CAAR (Current Awareness in Aging Research) is a weekly email report produced by the Center for Demography of Health and Aging at the University of Wisconsin-Madison that helps researchers keep up to date with the latest developments in the field. For more information, including an archive of back issues and subscription information see:


I. Reports and articles:

1. COMMONWEALTH FUND POLICY BRIEF: Note: The Commonwealth Fund "is a private foundation established in 1918 by Anna M. Harkness with the broad charge to enhance the common good.... The Fund's two national program areas are improving health insurance coverage and access to care and improving the quality of health care services." "Designing a Medicare Drug Benefit: Whose Needs Will Be Met?" by Bruce Stuart, Becky Briesacher, and Dennis Shea (Commonwealth Fund Policy Brief #436, December 2000, .pdf format, 8p.).


Many current proposals for providing a prescription drug benefit under Medicare would cover only beneficiaries with incomes at the federal poverty level or slightly above. But if annual income alone is used to determine eligibility, most beneficiaries will not qualify for coverage, according to a new study by Bruce Stuart of the University of Maryland and colleagues. The authors propose a broader definition of need that includes beneficiaries without continuous and stable coverage, those with high expenditures, and those with multiple chronic conditions. Under this expanded definition, nearly 90 percent of beneficiaries would be eligible for coverage.

Press Release:

Policy Brief:

2. IRS--REPORT: "Beyond Andrew Carnegie: Using a Linked Sample of Federal Income and Estate Tax Returns to Examine the Effects of Bequests on Beneficiary Behavior," by Jacob Milkow and Darien Berkowitz (US Internal Revenue Service, Statistics of Income Branch, November 2000, .pdf format, 6p.).

3. SSA COMMISSIONER SPEECH: "Charting the Course in a Time of Transformation at Social Security," by Kenneth S. Apfel, Commissioner of the US Social Security Administration, a speech at the National Academy of Public Administration Annual Conference, Washington DC, Nov. 15, 2000, HTML format).

4. _SCIENCE_ NEWS ABSTRACT: "An Antibiotic to Treat Alzheimer's?" by Laura Helmuth (_Science_, Vol. 290, No. 5495, p. 1273-1274, Nov. 17, 2000). Note: Electronic full text (HTML format) of this article may be available. Check your organization's library.

5. _BMJ_ NEWS:

A. "NHS Trust 'condoned' abuse of elderly patients," by Zosia Kmietowicz (_British Medical Journal_, Vol. 321, No. 7271, Nov. 18, 2000, p. 1244, HTML and .pdf format).

B. "Predisposition for long life may be shared by family members," by Scott Gottlieb (_British Medical Journal_, Vol. 321, No. 7271, Nov. 18, 2000, p. 1245, HTML and .pdf format).

6. AARP PRIME TIME RADIO: Note: These are audio transcripts and listeners will need the RealPlayer plug-in or helper application to hear them. Oct. 31, 2000: "Daughters, Mothers and Aging." "Dr. Lillian Rubin is a successful sociologist and psychotherapist who had a complicated, unpleasant relationship with her own mother; one that did not improve as they both aged. In a stark and honest examination of this situation, Dr. Rubin examines the mix of mothers, daughters and aging that affects so many of us. She discusses her book: _Tangled Lives: Daughters, Mothers and the Crucible of Aging_ with Mike Cuthbert. Running time: 23 minutes 56 seconds.

Scroll to 10/31/00: "Daughters, Mothers and Aging."


II. Working Papers:

7. FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF ATLANTA: "The Determinants of the Flow of Funds of Managed Portfolios: Mutual Funds versus Pension Funds," by Diane Del Guercio and Paula A. Tkac (Working Paper 2000-21, November 2000, .pdf format, 47p.).


Due to differences in financial sophistication and agency relationships, we posit that investors use different criteria to select portfolio managers in the retail mutual fund and fiduciary pension fund industry segments. We provide evidence on investors manager selection criteria by estimating the relation between manager asset flow and performance. We find that pension fund clients use quantitatively sophisticated measures like Jensens alpha, tracking error, and outperformance of a market benchmark. Pension clients also punish poorly performing managers by withdrawing assets under management. In contrast, mutual fund investors use raw return performance and flock disproportionately to recent winners but do not withdraw assets from recent losers. Mutual fund manager flow is significantly positively related to Jensens alpha, a seemingly anomalous result in light of a relatively unsophisticated mutual fund client base. We provide preliminary evidence, however, that this relation is driven by a high correlation between Jensens alpha and widely available summary performance measures, such as Morningstars star rating. By documenting differences in the flow-performance relation, we contribute to the growing literature linking fund manager behavior to the implicit incentives to increase assets under management. We show that several forces combine to weaken the incentive for pension fund managers to engage in the type of risk-shifting behavior identified in the mutual fund literature.

Click on "Download the full text..." for full text.


III. Journal Tables of Contents (check your library for availability):

8. Abstracts in Social Gerontology (Vol. 43, No. 3, October 2000) is available in electronic full text (HTML and .pdf format) in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your organization's library for availability.

9. American Journal of Epidemiology (Vol. 152, No. 10, Nov. 15, 2000). Note: This journal may be available in electronic full text (HTML and .pdf format) via Highwire Press. Check your organization's library for availability. Table of contents and abstracts are freely available to the public.

Click on "November 152 (10)".

10. Journal of Aging and Health (Vol. 12, No. 4, November 2000) is available in electronic full text (HTML and .pdf format) in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your organization's library for availability.

11. CARL Uncover Journal Tables of Contents. Follow the instructions below to access tables of contents. CARL Uncover provides fee based document delivery services for selected journals.

A. Point your browser to:

B. click on "Search Uncover"
C. click on "Search Uncover Now"
D. Type the Journal Name in the search box and click the radio button "Journal Title Browse"
E. click on the journal name
F. click on "journal issues"
G. click on the issues identified below

American Sociological Review (Vol. 65, No. 5, October 2000). Note: This journal is available in electronic full-text (HTML and .pdf format) in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your organization's library for the availability of this database and this issue.

Canadian Journal on Aging (Vol. 19 No. 1 Supplement, Summer, 2000).

International Journal of Aging and Human Development (Vol. 50, No. 4, 2000).

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (Vol. 48, No. 11, November 2000).


IV. Books:

12. NBER: _Trans-Atlantic Public Economics Seminar_, edited by Roger Gordon and Philippe Bacchetta (National Bureau of Economic Research, from a conference held May 22-24, 2000). The chapter "The Effects of 401(k) Plans on Household Wealth: Differences Across Earnings Groups," by Eric M. Engen and William G. Gale has been added (.pdf format, 56p.).

Scroll to "The Effects of 401(k) Plans on Household Wealth: Differences Across Earnings Groups".


V. Legislation Information Updates:


A. AOA press release: "President Signs Older Americans Act Amendments of 2000 into Law," (US Administration on Aging press release, Nov. 15, 2000).

B. Law text:

Search by "Bill Number" for for "HR 782" (without the quotes). See "Enrolled Bill."



VI. Websites of Interest:

14. AOA WEBSITE: BECAUSE WE CARE: A GUIDE FOR PEOPLE WHO CARE: The US Administration on Aging has recently opened this website, a "guide to assist America's family caregivers to deal with the day-to-day challenges associated with caregiving... Designed as a consumer-friendly online resource, the new site is dedicated to the growing numbers of caregivers in communities across the country."

15. SEER TRAINING WEB SITE: The National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program has opened a training web site. The first module is on the implementation of the International Classification of Diseases-Oncology-3 (ICD-O-3) implementation. The Macromedia "Flash" plug-in is required for the animations in the module.


Jack Solock
Data Librarian--Center for Demography and Ecology and Center for Demography of Health and Aging
4470 Social Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Madison, WI 53706