Economic insecurity is an emerging topic that is increasingly relevant to the labour markets of developed economies. This paper uses data from the British Household Panel Survey to assess the causal effect of various aspects of economic insecurity on mental health in the UK. The results support the idea that economic insecurity is an emerging socioeconomic determinant of mental health, although the size of the effect varies across measures of insecurity. In particular, perceived future risks are more damaging to mental health than realised volatility, insecurity is more damaging for men, and the negative effect of insecurity is constant throughout the income distribution. Importantly, these changes in mental health are experienced without future unemployment necessarily occurring.
- economic insecurity
- mental health
- socioeconomic determinants of health