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Myopia, redistribution and pensions

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Author Info

  • CREMER, Helmuth

    (Toulouse School of Economics (GREMAQ, IDEI and Institut universitaire de France))

  • PESTIEAU, Pierre

    ()
    (CREPP, HEC-Management School, University of Liège, Belgium; Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium; PSE and CEPR)

Abstract

This paper reviews a number of recent contributions that study pension design with myopic individuals. Its objective is to explore how the presence of more or less myopic individuals affects pension design when individuals differ also in productivity. This double heterogeneity gives rise to an interesting interplay between paternalistic and redistributive considerations, which is at the heart of most of the results that are presented. The main part of the paper is devoted to the issue of pension design when myopic individual do not save “enough” for their retirement because their “myopic self” (with a high discount rate) emerges when labor supply and savings decisions are made. Some extensions and variations are considered in the second part. In particular we deal with situations where labor disutility or preferences for consumption are subject to “habit formation” and where sin goods have a detrimental effect on second period health. Myopic individuals tend to underestimate the effects of both habit formation and sinful consumption, which complicates public policy.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) in its series CORE Discussion Papers with number 2010038.

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Date of creation: 01 Jul 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2010038

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Keywords: myopia; dual self; pensions; sin goods; habit formation;

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References

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  1. Alan L. Gustman & Thomas L. Steinmeier, 2001. "Imperfect Knowledge, Retirement and Saving," Working Papers wp012, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  2. PESTIEAU, Pierre & POSSEN, Uri, 2006. "Prodigality and myopia. Two rationales for social security," CORE Discussion Papers 2006073, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  3. Cremer, Helmuth & De Donder, Philippe & Maldonado, Dario & Pestieau, Pierre, 2007. "Voting over type and generosity of a pension system when some individuals are myopic," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(10), pages 2041-2061, November.
  4. Hans Fehr & Christian Habermann & Fabian Kindermann, 2006. "Social Security with Rational and Hyperbolic Consumers," Working Papers 010, Bavarian Graduate Program in Economics (BGPE).
  5. Hans Fehr & Fabian Kindermann, 2009. "Pension Funding and Individual Accounts in Economies with Life-cyclers and Myopes," CESifo Working Paper Series 2724, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Peter A. Diamond, 2003. "Taxation, Incomplete Markets, and Social Security," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262042134, December.
  7. Sanna Tenhunen & Matti Tuomala, 2010. "On Optimal Lifetime Redistribution Policy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 12(1), pages 171-198, 02.
  8. Laibson, David I., 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," Scholarly Articles 4481499, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU, Pierre & ROCHET, Jean-Charles, . "Capital income taxation when inherited wealth is not observable," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1700, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  10. Salanie, Francois & Treich, Nicolas, 2006. "Over-savings and hyperbolic discounting," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1557-1570, August.
  11. Martin Feldstein, 1986. "The Optimal Level of Social Security Benefits," NBER Working Papers 0970, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. T. Findley & Frank Caliendo, 2008. "The behavioral justification for public pensions: a survey," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer, vol. 32(4), pages 409-425, October.
  13. Louis Kaplow, 2006. "Myopia and the Effects of Social Security and Capital Taxation on Labor Supply," NBER Working Papers 12452, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Diamond, Peter & Koszegi, Botond, 2003. "Quasi-hyperbolic discounting and retirement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(9-10), pages 1839-1872, September.
  15. Atkinson, A. B. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1976. "The design of tax structure: Direct versus indirect taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 55-75.
  16. Docquier, Frederic, 2002. "On the optimality of public pensions in an economy with life-cyclers and myopes," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 121-140, January.
  17. T. Findley & Frank Caliendo, 2009. "Short horizons, time inconsistency, and optimal social security," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 16(4), pages 487-513, August.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Driscoll, John C. & Holden, Steinar, 2014. "Behavioral Economics and Macroeconomic Models," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2014-43, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Frank Caliendo & T. Findley, 2013. "Limited computational ability and social security," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 414-433, June.
  3. Sebastian Koehne & Moritz Kuhn, 2014. "Optimal Taxation in a Habit Formation Economy," CESifo Working Paper Series 4581, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Andras Simonovits, 2013. "A family of simple paternalistic transfer models," IEHAS Discussion Papers 1324, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
  5. Fehr, Hans & Uhde, Johannes, 2012. "Optimal Pension Design in General Equlibrium," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62024, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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