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When Can Insurers Offer Products That Dominate Delayed Old-Age Pension Benefit Claiming?

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  • Sanders, E.A.T.
  • De Waegenaere, A.M.B.
  • Nijman, T.E.

    (Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research)

Abstract

It is common practice for public pension schemes to offer individuals the option to delay benefit claiming until after the normal retirement age and adjust the annual benefit level as a result. This adjustment is often not actuarially neutral with respect to the age at which benefits are claimed. The degree of actuarial nonequivalence varies by interest rates as well as individual characteristics such as gender and age. In this paper we show that actuarial nonequivalence can imply that deferring benefit claiming is suboptimal, irrespective of the preferences of the individual. Specifically, we derive preference-free conditions under which delaying benefit claiming is dominated by claiming benefits early, and using them to buy super-replicating annuity products from an insurance company. We find that the degree of actuarial nonequivalence in public pension schemes is such that such dominating strategies can exist even when the purchase of annuities would be significantly more costly than what is currently observed. If individuals choose to strategically exploit these dominating strategies, this will affect benefit claiming behavior, which in turn affects long run program costs.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research in its series Discussion Paper with number 2010-43.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:dgr:kubcen:201043

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Web page: http://center.uvt.nl

Related research

Keywords: Pension Benefit Claiming; Delay Options; Actuarial Nonequivalence; Preference-free Dominance;

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  1. Wei Sun & Anthony Webb, 2009. "How Much Do Households Really Lose By Claiming Social Security at Age 62?," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2009-11, Center for Retirement Research, revised Apr 2009.
  2. Song, Jae G. & Manchester, Joyce, 2007. "New evidence on earnings and benefit claims following changes in the retirement earnings test in 2000," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(3-4), pages 669-700, April.
  3. Olivia S. Mitchell & James M. Poterba & Mark J. Warshawsky, . "New Evidence on the Money's Worth of Individual Annuities," Pension Research Council Working Papers 97-9, Wharton School Pension Research Council, University of Pennsylvania.
  4. Michael Hurd & James P. Smith & Julie M. Zissimopoulos, 2003. "The Effects of Subjective Survival on Retirements and Social Security Claiming," Working Papers 03-11, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  5. Vasicek, Oldrich, 1977. "An equilibrium characterization of the term structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 177-188, November.
  6. Courtney Coile & Peter Diamond & Jonathan Gruber & Alain Jousten, 1999. "Delays in Claiming Social Security Benefits," NBER Working Papers 7318, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Jeffrey R. Brown, 2003. "Redistribution and Insurance: Mandatory Annuitization With Mortality Heterogeneity," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 70(1), pages 17-41.
  8. Vasicek, Oldrich Alfonso, 1977. "Abstract: An Equilibrium Characterization of the Term Structure," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(04), pages 627-627, November.
  9. Peter Diamond, 2005. "Reforming public pensions in the US and the UK," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 24662, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  10. Wolfram J. Horneff & Raimond H. Maurer & Michael Z. Stamos, 2008. "Optimal Gradual Annuitization: Quantifying the Costs of Switching to Annuities," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 75(4), pages 1019-1038.
  11. James E. Duggan & Christopher J. Soares, 2002. "Actuarial Nonequivalence in Early and Delayed Social Security Benefit Claims," Public Finance Review, , vol. 30(3), pages 188-207, May.
  12. Jamshidian, Farshid, 1989. " An Exact Bond Option Formula," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 44(1), pages 205-09, March.
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