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Backing out of private pension provision - Lessons from Germany

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  • Ziegelmeyer, Michael

    ()

  • Nick, Julius

    ()
    (Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA))

Abstract

Financing pensions in the EU is a challenge. Many EU countries introduced private pension schemes to compensate declining public pension levels due to reforms made necessary by demographic change. In 2001, Germany introduced the Riester pension. Ten years after introduction the prevalence rate of this voluntary private pension scheme approximates 37%. However, numerous criticisms raise doubts that the market for Riester products is transparent. Using the 2010 German SAVE survey, this paper investigates for the first time terminated and dormant Riester contracts on a household level. Respectively 14.5% and 12.5% of households who own or have owned a Riester contract terminated it or stopped paying contributions. We find that around 45% of terminated or dormant Riester contracts are caused at least partly by product-related reasons, which is significantly higher than for endowment life insurance contracts. Uptake of a new contract after a termination is more likely if termination is productrelated. Nevertheless, after a termination 73% of households do not sign a new contract, which can have serious long-term consequences for old-age income. Households with low income, low financial wealth or low pension literacy are more likely to have terminated or dormant contracts. Low income and low financial wealth households also have the lowest prevalence rate of Riester contracts and are at higher risk of old-age poverty.

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Paper provided by Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy in its series MEA discussion paper series with number 12262.

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Date of creation: 20 Aug 2012
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Handle: RePEc:mea:meawpa:12262

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References

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  1. Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2013. "Illuminate the unknown: evaluation of imputation procedures based on the SAVE survey," AStA Advances in Statistical Analysis, Springer, vol. 97(1), pages 49-76, January.
  2. Ziegelmeyer, Michael, 2009. "Documentation of the logical imputation using the panel structure of the 2003-2008 German SAVE Survey," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 08-41, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim & Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  3. Hanming Fang & Edward Kung, 2012. "Why Do Life Insurance Policyholders Lapse? The Roles of Income, Health and Bequest Motive Shocks," NBER Working Papers 17899, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  7. Johannes Geyer, 2011. "Riester-Rente: Rezept gegen Altersarmut?," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 78(47), pages 16-21.
  8. van Rooij, Maarten & Lusardi, Annamaria & Alessie, Rob, 2011. "Financial literacy and stock market participation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(2), pages 449-472, August.
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  12. Campbell, John & Calvert, Lauren E. & Sodini, Paolo, 2009. "Fight or Flight? Portfolio Rebalancing by Individual Investors," Scholarly Articles 2617031, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  14. Martin Gasche & Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2010. "Hat die Finanz- und Wirtschaftskrise Verbreitung und Volumen der Riester-Rente beeinflusst?," Wirtschaftsdienst, Springer, vol. 90(4), pages 255-261, April.
  15. Coppola, Michela & Gasche, Martin, 2011. "Die Riester-Förderung – das unbekannte Wesen," MEA discussion paper series 11244, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
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  19. Kornelia Hagen & Axel Kleinlein, 2011. "Zehn Jahre Riester-Rente: kein Grund zum Feiern," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 78(47), pages 3-14.
  20. Kornelia Hagen & Lucia A. Reisch, 2010. "Riesterrente: Politik ohne Marktbeobachtung," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 77(8), pages 2-14.
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Cited by:
  1. Bettina Lamla, 2013. "Family background and the decision to provide for old age: a siblings approach," Empirica, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 483-504, August.

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