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How Would Financial Risk Affect Retirement Income Under Individual Accounts?

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  • Gary Burtless

Abstract

A popular proposal for reforming Social Security is to supplement or replace traditional publicly financed benefits with a new system of mandatory, defined contribution private pensions. Proponents claim that private plans offer better returns than traditional Social Security. To achieve higher returns, however, contributors are exposed to extra risks associated with financial market fluctuations. This issue in brief offers evidence on the extent of these risks by considering the hypothetical pensions U.S. workers would have obtained during the past century if they had accumulated retirement savings in individual accounts.

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File URL: http://crr.bc.edu/briefs/how-would-financial-risk-affect-retirement-income-under-individual-accounts/
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Retirement Research in its series Issues in Brief with number ib-5.

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Date of creation: Oct 2000
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:crr:issbrf:ib-5

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  1. Gary Burtless, 2000. "Social Security Privatization and Financial Market Risk: Lessons from U.S. Financial History," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 211, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
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Cited by:
  1. Alicia H. Munnell & Alex Golub-Sass & Richard W. Kopcke & Anthony Webb, 2009. "What Does It Cost To Guarantee Returns?," Issues in Brief ib2009-9-4, Center for Retirement Research, revised Feb 2009.
  2. Alicia H. Munnell & Anthony Webb & Alex Golub-Sass, 2008. "How Much Risk is Acceptable?," Issues in Brief ib2008-8-20, Center for Retirement Research, revised Nov 2008.
  3. Purvi Sevak, 2002. "Wealth Shocks and Retirement Timing: Evidence from the Nineties," Working Papers wp027, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  4. Thomas L. Hungerford, 2003. "U.S. Workers' Investment Decisions for Participant-Directed Defined Contribution Pension Assets," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_375, Levy Economics Institute.

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