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Saving and Demographic Change: The Global Dimension

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Author Info

  • Barry Bosworth
  • Gabriel Chodorow-Reich

    ()
    (Brookings Institution)

Abstract

This paper uses a panel data set of 85 countries covering 1960-2005 to investigate the macroeconomic linkages between national rates of saving and investment and population aging. The issue takes on added significance because of the recent suggestion that the decline in global interest rates has been driven by demographic changes in the industrial economies. We do find a significant correlation between the age composition of the population and nations’ rates of saving and investment, but the effects vary substantially by region. They are very strong for the non-industrial economies of Asia, but weak in the high-income countries. We also find evidence of demographic effects on both the public and private components of national saving. Furthermore, we conclude that the demographic effects on saving will be less disruptive than sometimes believed because of offsetting declines in investment. However, the effects on saving are stronger than those for investment, implying that most aging economies will ultimately be pushed in the direction of current account deficits. In contrast to some of the recent discussion, we find that demographic change is already exerting a downward pressure on saving in the high-income economies and that the current evidence of a global saving glut is related more to the weakness of investment – particularly in Asia – and the high short-run saving of the oil-producing countries. We conclude with a discussion of why the effects appear to be so strong in Asia.

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File URL: http://crr.bc.edu/working-papers/saving-and-demographic-change-the-global-dimension/
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Retirement Research in its series Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College with number wp2007-02.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2007
Date of revision: Feb 2007
Handle: RePEc:crr:crrwps:wp2007-02

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Related research

Keywords: national saving rates; populating aging; global interest rates; investment; demographic change;

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References

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  1. Martin Feldstein & Charles Horioka, 1979. "Domestic Savings and International Capital Flows," NBER Working Papers 0310, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. repec:fth:inadeb:412 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. David E. Bloom & David Canning & Pia N. Malaney, 1999. "Demographic Change and Economic Growth in Asia," CID Working Papers 15, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  4. Ray C. Fair & Kathryn M. Dominguez, 1987. "Effects of the Changing U.S. Age Distribution on Macroeconomic Equations," NBER Working Papers 2280, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Higgins, Matthew, 1998. "Demography, National Savings, and International Capital Flows," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(2), pages 343-69, May.
  6. Schultz, T. Paul, 2005. "Demographic Determinants of Savings: Estimating and Interpreting the Aggregate Association in Asia," IZA Discussion Papers 1479, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Charles Yuji Horioka & Akiko Terada-Hagiwara, 2011. "The Determinants and Long-term Projections of Saving Rates in Developing Asia," NBER Working Papers 17581, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Zhai, Fan & Lin, Tun & Byambadorj, Enerelt, 2009. "A General Equilibrium Analysis of the Impact of Climate Change on Agriculture in the People’s Republic of China," Asian Development Review, Asian Development Bank, vol. 26(1), pages 206-225.
  3. Ismail, Aisha & Rashid, Kashif, 2013. "Determinants of household saving: Cointegrated evidence from Pakistan (1975–2011)," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 524-531.

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