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Saving Social Security

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  • Peter A. Diamond
  • Peter R. Orszag

Abstract

Social Security is one of America's most successful government programs. It has helped millions of Americans avoid poverty in old age. To be sure, the program faces a long-term deficit and is in need of updating. But Social Security's long-term financial health can be restored: the projected deficit is small enough that it can be eliminated through a progressive reform that combines modest benefit reductions and revenue increases.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter A. Diamond & Peter R. Orszag, 2005. "Saving Social Security," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 11-32, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:19:y:2005:i:2:p:11-32
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/0895330054048722
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    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/0895330054048722
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Erosa, Andres & Gervais, Martin, 2002. "Optimal Taxation in Life-Cycle Economies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 338-369, August.
    2. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1998. "Perspectives on the Social Security Crisis and Proposed Solutions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 142-150, May.
    3. Samwick, Andrew & Feldstein, Martin, 2001. "Potential Paths of Social Security Reform," Scholarly Articles 2920119, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    4. Peter A. Diamond, 2000. "Administrative Costs and Equilibrium Charges with Individual Accounts," NBER Chapters,in: Administrative Aspects of Investment-Based Social Security Reform, pages 137-172 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Alicia H. Munnell, 2003. "The Declining Role Of Social Security," Just the Facts jtf-6, Center for Retirement Research.
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    Cited by:

    1. Heer, Burkhard & Polito, Vito & Wickens, Michael R., 2017. "Population Aging, Social Security and Fiscal Limits," CEPR Discussion Papers 11978, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Nicholas Barr & Peter Diamond, 2006. "The Economics of Pensions," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(1), pages 15-39, Spring.
    3. Aronsson, Thomas & Blomquist, Sören, 2018. "Uncertain Length of Life, Retirement Age, and Optimal Pension Design," Umeå Economic Studies 957, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
    4. András Simonovits, 2006. "Social Security Reform in the US: Lessons from Hungary," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0602, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, revised 24 Apr 2006.
    5. Christian Jaag & Christian Keuschnigg & Mirela Keuschnigg, 2010. "Pension reform, retirement, and life-cycle unemployment," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 17(5), pages 556-585, October.
    6. Gonzalez-Eiras, Marti­n & Niepelt, Dirk, 2008. "The future of social security," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 197-218, March.
    7. Walter Fisher & Christian Keuschnigg, 2010. "Pension reform and labor market incentives," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 23(2), pages 769-803, March.
    8. Kumru, Cagri S. & Thanopoulos, Athanasios C., 2011. "Social security reform with self-control preferences," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7-8), pages 886-899, August.
    9. Christian Keuschnigg & Mirela Keuschnigg & Christian Jaag, 2011. "Aging and the Financing of Social Security in Switzerland," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 147(II), pages 181-231, June.
    10. Gabay, Daniel & Grasselli, Martino, 2012. "Fair demographic risk sharing in defined contribution pension systems," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 657-669.
    11. Alessandro Cigno, 2010. "How to Avoid a Pension Crisis: A Question of Intelligent System Design ," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 56(1), pages 21-37, March.
    12. Marchand, J. & Smeeding, T., 2016. "Poverty and Aging," Handbook of the Economics of Population Aging, Elsevier.
      • Marchand, Joseph & Smeeding, Timothy, 2016. "Poverty and Aging," Working Papers 2016-11, University of Alberta, Department of Economics, revised 20 Nov 2016.
    13. Kaganovich, Michael & Zilcha, Itzhak, 2012. "Pay-as-you-go or funded social security? A general equilibrium comparison," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 455-467.
    14. Thomas Aronsson & Sören Blomquist, 2010. "The Standard Deviation of Life-Length, Retirement Incentives, and Optimal Pension Design," CESifo Working Paper Series 3201, CESifo Group Munich.
    15. Cagri Seda Kumru & Athanasios C. Thanopoulos, 2009. "Social Security Reform and Temptation," CESifo Working Paper Series 2778, CESifo Group Munich.
    16. Keuschnigg, Christian & Fisher, Walter, 2011. "Life-Cycle Unemployment, Retirement and Parametric Pension Reform," Economics Working Paper Series 1119, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
    17. Callan, Tim & Keane, Claire & Walsh, John R., 2009. "Pension Policy: New Evidence on Key Issues," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number RS14.
    18. Luciano Greco, 2005. "The Optimal Design of Funded Pension Plans: Unbundling Financing and Investment," "Marco Fanno" Working Papers 0003, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche "Marco Fanno".
    19. T. Findley & Frank Caliendo, 2008. "The behavioral justification for public pensions: a survey," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 32(4), pages 409-425, October.
    20. Heikki Oksanen, 2005. "Actuarial Neutrality across Generations Applied to Public Pensions under Population Ageing: Effects on Government Finances and National Saving," CESifo Working Paper Series 1501, CESifo Group Munich.
    21. Jan Bonenkamp & Lex Meijdam & Eduard Ponds & Ed Westerhout, 2017. "Ageing-driven pension reforms," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(3), pages 953-976, July.
    22. Michael Kaganovich & Itzhak Zilcha, 2008. "Alternative Social Security Systems and Growth," CESifo Working Paper Series 2353, CESifo Group Munich.
    23. Andras Simonovits, 2009. "Hungarian Pension System and its Reform," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0908, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
    24. Massimo Pivetti, 2006. "The 'principle of scarcity', pension policy and growth," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(3), pages 379-390.
    25. Greco, Luciano G., 2006. "The optimal design of funded pensions," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 24519, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.

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