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Does the Balance of Power Within a Family Matter? The Case of the Retirement Equity Act

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  • Saku Aura

Abstract

This paper studies within-family decision making regarding investment in income protection for surviving spouses. A change in US pension law (the Retirement Equity Act of 1984) is used as an instrument to derive predictions both from a simple Nash-bargaining model of the household and from the classical single-utility-function model of the household. This law change gave spouses of married pension-plan participants the right to survivor benefits unless they explicitly waived this right. The predictions of the classical model are rejected in favor of the predictions of the Nash-bargaining model in the data.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2002/wp-cesifo-2002-05/734.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 734.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_734

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  1. Jeffrey R. Brown, 1999. "Are the Elderly Really Over-Annuitized? New Evidence on Life Insurance and Bequests," NBER Working Papers 7193, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Lundberg, S.J. & Pollak, R.A. & Wales, T.J., 1994. "Do Husbands and Wives Pool Their Resources? Evidence from U.K. Child Benefit," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 94-6, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  3. Brigitte C. Madrian & Dennis F. Shea, 2001. "THE POWER OF SUGGESTION: INERTIA IN 401(k) PARTICIPATION AND SAVINGS BEHAVIOR," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1149-1187, November.
  4. Martin Browning & P.A. Chiappori, 1996. "Efficient Intra-Household Allocations - A General Characterization and Empirical Tests," Discussion Papers 96-10, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  5. Manser, Marilyn & Brown, Murray, 1980. "Marriage and Household Decision-Making: A Bargaining Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 21(1), pages 31-44, February.
  6. Shelly Lundberg & Jennifer Ward-Batts, 2000. "Saving for Retirement: Household Bargaining and Household Net Worth," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 0026, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  7. B. Douglas Bernheim & Lorenzo Forni & Jagadeesh Gokhale & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1999. "The adequacy of life insurance: evidence from the health and retirement survey," Working Paper 9914, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  8. B. Douglas Bernheim, 1992. "How Strong are Bequest Motives? Evidence Based on Estimates of the Demand for Life Insurance and Annuities," NBER Working Papers 2942, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Esther Duflo, 2000. "Grandmothers and Granddaughters: Old Age Pension and Intra-household Allocation in South Africa," NBER Working Papers 8061, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Lundberg, S. & Pollak, R.A., 1991. "Separate Spheres Bargaining and the Marriage Market," Working Papers 91-08, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
  11. Martin Browning, 1994. "The Saving Behaviour of a Two Person Household," Department of Economics Working Papers 1994-01, McMaster University.
  12. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1988. "Nash-Bargained Households Decisions: A Comment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 29(4), pages 791-96, November.
  13. McElroy, Marjorie B & Horney, Mary Jean, 1981. "Nash-Bargained Household Decisions: Toward a Generalization of the Theory of Demand," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 22(2), pages 333-49, June.
  14. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1988. "Rational Household Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 63-90, January.
  15. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1991. "Nash-Bargained Household Decisions: A Rejoinder," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 32(3), pages 761-62, August.
  16. K. C. Holden & S. Nicholson, . "Selection of a Joint-and-Survivor Pension," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1175-98, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  17. Kotlikoff, Laurence J, 1988. "Intergenerational Transfers and Savings," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 41-58, Spring.
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Cited by:
  1. Jon Strand, 2004. "Public-Good Valuation and Intrafamily Allocation," CESifo Working Paper Series 1351, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. John Beshears & James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian, 2008. "How are Preferences Revealed?," NBER Working Papers 13976, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Saku Aura, 2003. "Uncommitted Couples: Some Efficiency and Policy Implications of Marital Bargaining," Microeconomics 0304002, EconWPA.
  4. Rundshagen, Bianca, 2013. "Mediation - Boon or Bane for the Stability and Efficiency of Marriage?," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79840, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  5. Strand, Jon, 2009. "Individual and household value of mortality reductions with intrahousehold bargaining," HERO On line Working Paper Series 2004:2, Oslo University, Health Economics Research Programme.
  6. Jeffrey R. Brown & Jeffrey R. Kling & Sendhil Mullainathan & Marian V. Wrobel, 2013. "Framing Lifetime Income," NBER Working Papers 19063, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Maurizio Mazzocco & Claudia Ruiz & Shintaro Yamaguchi, 2014. "Labor Supply and Household Dynamics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 354-59, May.
  8. Jeffrey R. Brown, 2007. "Rational and Behavioral Perspectives on the Role of Annuities in Retirement Planning," NBER Working Papers 13537, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Lukach, R. & Plasmans, J.E.J., 2002. "Measuring Knowledge Spillovers using Patent Citations: Evidence from the Belgian Firm's Data," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-92281, Tilburg University.
  10. Shelly Lundberg & Richard Startz & Steven Stillman, 2001. "The Retirement-Consumption Puzzle: A Marital Bargaining Approach," Working Papers 01-04, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  11. Gale, William & Pence, Karen, 2006. "Are Successive Generations Getting Wealthier, and If So, Why?Evidence from the 1990s," MPRA Paper 55502, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. John Beshears & James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian, 2006. "The Importance of Default Options for Retirement Savings Outcomes: Evidence from the United States," NBER Working Papers 12009, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Brighita Negrusa & Sonia Oreffice, 2011. "Sexual orientation and household financial decisions: evidence from couples in the United States," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 9(4), pages 445-463, December.

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