Table 3

 Early-life indicators of income

IndicatorLocation, study designIndicators of SEP measuredCriteria
*P, prospectively; R, retrospectively; SEP, socioeconomic position.
Family income during childhoodAustralia, longitudinal Mater—University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy and its Outcomes48,57PValidity:Poor family financial situation is an important childhood characteristic in the explanation of socioeconomic inequalities in health56Relevance: May be affected by inflation over time, or changing criteria for definitions of povertyReliability:Potentially affected by recall bias and poor response rates Timeframe or age within indicator question may affect responses, as circumstances may change throughout early lifeDeconstruction:Economic distress construct could be broken down into component parts if necessary
USA, Woodlawn Cohort Study75P
Family income when participant aged 13 yearsBrazil, Cross-sectional, Cianorte Survey of School Children64,65P
Household income when participant aged 18 yearsUSA, Wisconsin Longitudinal Study76P
Economic distress construct in childhood based on receipt of public assistance or welfare, inability to pay for food, rent or mortgage, not having enough money to make ends meet, or borrowing money to pay for medical expensesUSA, Longitudinal Harvard Study of Moods and Cycles74R
Degree to which family was considered wealthyFinland, Longitudinal Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study68–70R
Receipt of state welfare benefitsAustralia, Longitudinal Mater—University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy and its Outcomes48,57P
1970 British Birth Cohort77P
Free school meals or on supplementary benefit1958 British Birth Cohort78P
Household poverty status when participant born and aged 7 yearsUSA, Longitudinal National Collaborative Perinatal Project59,60P
Period of 6 months during child hood when family was on welfareUSA, Cross-sectional National Survey of Midlife Development54R
Number of times household income was at least 200% below poverty lineUSA, Longitudinal Alameda County Study39R
Financial circumstances during childhoodThe UK, Longitudinal Whitehall Study35R
The Netherlands, Longitudinal Study of Socio-Economic Health Differences58R
Sweden, Longitudinal level of living surveys79R