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Women’s Retirement Incomes in New Zealand: A Household Bargaining Approach

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Author Info

  • John Gibson
  • Trinh Le
  • Grant Scobie

    ()
    (University of Waikato
    University of Canterbury
    New Zealand Treasury)

Abstract

Bargaining models of household wealth accumulation point to a potential conflict of interest between husbands and wives. Since wives are typically younger than their husbands and have longer life expectancy, they have to finance a longer expected retirement period. Thus, it is argued that when women have greater relative bargaining power, households will accumulate higher levels of wealth. However, in this paper, exactly the opposite pattern is reported for New Zealand. To explain this contradiction of the pattern reported in the literature, we construct a consumption smoothing model of saving for retirement. The results suggest that in this setting it may be rational for women with greater bargaining power to favour greater current consumption rather than wealth accumulation. These results indicate the importance of defining the policy context precisely when considering the implications of household bargaining models.

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File URL: http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/research-policy/wp/2004/04-22/twp04-22.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by New Zealand Treasury in its series Treasury Working Paper Series with number 04/22.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nzt:nztwps:04/22

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Related research

Keywords: Bargaining; Intra-household; Pensions; Retirement; Wealth; New Zealand; Superannuation;

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  1. Koenker, Roger W & Bassett, Gilbert, Jr, 1978. "Regression Quantiles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 33-50, January.
  2. Browning, Martin, 2000. " The Saving Behaviour of a Two-Person Household," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 102(2), pages 235-51, June.
  3. Shelly Lundberg & Jennifer Ward-Batts, 2000. "Saving for Retirement: Household Bargaining and Household Net Worth," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington, Department of Economics at the University of Washington 0026, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  4. Quisumbing, A.R., 1991. "Intergenerational Transfers in Philippine Rice Villages: Gender Differences in Traditional Inheritance Customs," Papers, Yale - Economic Growth Center 632, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  5. Doss, Cheryl R., 1996. "Testing among models of intrahousehold resource allocation," World Development, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 24(10), pages 1597-1609, October.
  6. John Gibson & Grant Scobie, 2001. "A cohort analysis of household income, consumption and saving," New Zealand Economic Papers, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(2), pages 196-216.
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