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Shattered Dreams: The Effects of Changing the Pension System Late in the Game

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Author Info

  • de Grip, Andries

    ()
    (ROA, Maastricht University)

  • Lindeboom, Maarten

    ()
    (VU University Amsterdam)

  • Montizaan, Raymond

    ()
    (ROA, Maastricht University)

Abstract

This paper assesses the impact of a dramatic reform of the Dutch pension system on mental health, savings behavior and retirement expectations of workers nearing retirement age. The reform means that public sector workers born on January 1, 1950 or later face a substantial reduction in their pension rights while workers born before this threshold date may still retire under the old, more generous rules. We employ a unique matched survey and administrative data set comprising male public sector workers born in 1949 and 1950 and find strong ex ante effects on mental health for workers who are affected by the reform. This effect increases as birth dates approach the threshold date. Furthermore, the effects differ in accordance with worker characteristics. Finally, we find that the response of those affected by the reform is to work longer and to save more.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4034.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Economic Journal, 2012, 122 (559), 1–25
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4034

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Keywords: causal effect; pension reform; mental health; retirement;

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References

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  1. Arie Kapteyn & Klaas de Vos, 1997. "Social Security and Retirement in The Netherlands," NBER Working Papers 6135, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Dhaval Dave & Inas Rashad & Jasmina Spasojevic, 2006. "The Effects of Retirement on Physical and Mental Health Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 12123, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Calvo, Esteban & Haverstick, Kelly & Sass, Steven, 2007. "What Makes Retirees Happier: A Gradual or 'Cold Turkey' Retirement?," MPRA Paper 5607, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Coe, Norma B. & Lindeboom, Maarten, 2008. "Does Retirement Kill You? Evidence from Early Retirement Windows," IZA Discussion Papers 3817, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
  6. Maarten Lindeboom & France Portrait & Gerard J. van den Berg, 2002. "An econometric analysis of the mental-health effects of major events in the life of older individuals," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(6), pages 505-520.
  7. Adeline Delavande & Susann Rohwedder, 2008. "Individuals’ Responses to Social Security Reform," Working Papers wp182, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  8. Tracy A. Falba & William T. Gallo & Jody L. Sindelar, 2008. "Work Expectations, Realizations, and Depression in Older Workers," NBER Working Papers 14435, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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