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Simulating the Privatization of Social Security in General Equilibrium

In: Privatizing Social Security

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  • Laurence J. Kotlikoff

Abstract

This paper studies the macroeconomic and efficiency effects of privatizing social security. It does so by simulating alternative privatization schemes using the Auerbach-Kotlikoff Dynamic Life-Cycle Model. The simulations indicate three things. First, privatizing social security can generate very major long-run increases in output and living standards. Second the long-run gains from privatization are larger if privatization redistributes resources from initial to future generations, the pure efficiency gains from privatization are also substantial. Efficiency gains refers to the welfare improvement available to future generations after existing generations have been fully compensated for their losses from privatization. The precise size of the efficiency gain depends on the existing tax structure, the linkage between benefits and taxes under the existing social security system, and the method chosen to finance benefits during the transition. Third, at least in the long run, privatizing social security is likely to be progressive in that it improves the well-being of the lifetime poor relative to that of the lifetime rich

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This chapter was published in:

  • Martin Feldstein, 1998. "Privatizing Social Security," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number feld98-1, July.
    This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 6252.

    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:6252

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    1. Robert C. Merton, 1981. "On the Role of Social Security as a Means for Efficient Risk-Bearing in an Economy Where Human Capital Is Not Tradeable," NBER Working Papers 0743, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Feldstein, Martin & Samwick, Andrew A., 1992. "Social Security Rules and Marginal Tax Rates," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 45(1), pages 1-22, March.
    3. Christophe Chamley, 1980. "The Welfare Cost of Capital Income Taxation in a Growing Economy," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 553, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    4. Martin Feldstein & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 2001. "Social Security," NBER Working Papers 8451, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
      • Feldstein, Martin & Liebman, Jeffrey B., 2002. "Social security," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 32, pages 2245-2324 Elsevier.
    5. Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Avia Spivak, 1979. "The Family as an Incomplete Annuities Market," NBER Working Papers 0362, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Auerbach, A.J. & Kotlikoff, L.J. & Weil, D.N., 1992. "The Increasing Annuitization of the Elderly - Estimates and Implications for Intergenerational Transfers, Inequality and National Saving," Papers 6, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    7. Jagadeesh Gokhale & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & John Sabelhaus, 1996. "Understanding the Postwar Decline in U.S. Saving: A Cohort Analysis," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(1), pages 315-407.
    8. Kotlikoff, Laurence, 1996. "Privatizing School Security at Home and Abroad," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 368-72, May.
    9. Arrau, Patricio, 1990. "Social security reform : the capital accumulation and intergenerational distribution effect," Policy Research Working Paper Series 512, The World Bank.
    10. Alan J. Auerbach & Jagadeesh Gokhale & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & John Sabelhaus & David N. Weil, 1994. "The annuitization of Americans' resources: a cohort analysis," Working Paper 9413, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    11. Michael J. Boskin & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Douglas J. Puffert & John B. Shoven, 1987. "Social Security: A Financial Appraisal Across and Within Generations," NBER Working Papers 1891, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Hayashi, Fumio & Altonji, Joseph & Kotlikoff, Laurence, 1996. "Risk-Sharing between and within Families," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 261-94, March.
    13. Salvador Valdés & Peter Diamond, . "Social Security Reforms in Chile," Documentos de Trabajo 161, Instituto de Economia. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile..
    14. Peter Diamond, 2004. "Social Security," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 1-24, March.
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