King of Mountain Status: +1 Year Alive
From a Freakonomics podcast, we hear how apex status (Nobel prize, Oscar, Baseball hall of fame, etc) extends lifespan about a year (assuming their non-controlled model passes the usual correlation-is-not-causation hurdles), and being nominated but losing doesn’t do it:
Research shows that people who buy annuities tend to live longer – and not just because they are the kind of people that have the money to buy annuities to start with. It’s apparently that little extra incentive of the annuity payout that keeps people going.
I’d say it’s rather more likely adverse selection - those with private info about their ability and intent to live a longer, healthier life are more likely to convert their savings into an annuity. Also, such a decision is just one of many conscientious, risk-averse behaviors, some of which probably extend lifespan. Though I am sympathetic to their fanciful story - “make my decision to buy an annuity a good one by holding on a year longer” reminds me of the sunk-cost fallacy and wanting to avoid admitting a mistake. Also, people who run out of money (didn’t buy an annuity) might die soon after - if only from the stress of managing the last fumes in their tank.