We study to what extent the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) is representative of all income groups, but with a particular emphasis on low-income groups. To focus on the HRS sample composition and abstract from potential measurement issues associated with measures of income, we exploit the SSA administrative data matched to the HRS sample and compare the distribution of the matched SSA variables against the distribution of the same variables for the same population in the SSA databases. Overall, the HRS is representative for the population it covers. However, for some subgroups in the low-income population, there are some differences.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.
Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.