Don't count on recession benefits

This April 22, 2014, file photo shows an employment application form on a table during a job fair at Columbia-Greene Community College in Hudson, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mike Groll, File)

Something that would have been nice to know a few years ago: The rate of mortality drops during a recession.

But then again, someone who loses his job has a 73 percent higher risk of death.

Jose Tapia, an economist and population health research at Drexel University examined 18 years of data from the U.S. Department of Labor and found that both conclusions are correct.

His research, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, did not explore why these phenomena occur, but his team has some theories: Individuals who lose their jobs might experience depression, and might engage in behavior like drug use that is related to death.

And in a recession people avoid some of the stresses of commuting, sleeping less and working faster, and increased pollution in the atmosphere.

And, the team points out, a recession affects the whole adult population, so the benefits are more widely felt.

But before cheering up, there's another report to consider.

Research has shown that people who experience recessions during mid-life might have an increased risk of cognitive decline later in life.

So we're back where we started, wanting to see a full economic recovery - and a jobless rate of zero.