Profiling Financial Asset Holders across Europe
Roberta Varriale1, Omar Paccagnella2
1Department of Statistics “G.Parenti”, University of Florence, Florence, Italy; 2Department of Statistical Sciences, University of Padua, Padova, Italy

Wealth is an useful measure of the socio-economic status of the elderly, because it might reflect both accumulated socio-economic position and potential for current consumption. Even though the elderly control, as a group, a substantial fraction of the household wealth, the majority of them has restricted portfolio holdings and does not invest in risky financial assets. Furthermore, there is evidence of a large heterogeneity in household portfolio ownership within and across European countries. The segmentation of the European market has been widely investigated over the last decade: the identification of homogenous segments helps companies to develop and implement international marketing strategies and the findings can support the researches on the household life-cycle effects within the financial market.

In this paper, we aim at providing new evidence on this issue both at the household and country level, by investigating similarities and differences in the ownership patterns of several financial assets among elderly in Europe. To do so, we exploit the richness of information provided by SHARE (Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe), an international survey on ageing collecting detailed information on several aspects of the socioeconomic condition of the European elderly.

Given the hierarchical structure of the data, the econometric solution we adopt is a multilevel latent class analysis, which allows obtaining country and household segments simultaneously. In particular, the role of the households' characteristics in their choices of asset ownership is investigated. Models with and without first-level covariates are estimated and ex-post household profiles are evaluated and compared.

Keywords: Ageing; Multilevel latent class analysis; Segmentation; Household profiles

Biography: Roberta Varriale is Research Fellow at the Department of Statistics “G.Parenti” of the University of Florence. After receiving her PhD in Applied Statistics from the University of Florence, she worked as Researcher at the Department of Methodology and Statistics of Tilburg University. Her researcher interests include latent variable models with a particular focus on multilevel latent class and factor models for the evaluation of the university efficiency. She has published in applied statistics journals and contributed to volumes.