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Annuities and Your Nest Egg: Reforms to Promote Optimal Annuitization of Retirement Capital

Author

Listed:
  • Norma L. Nielson

    (University of Calgary)

Abstract

Retiring babyboomers are driving a shift from retirement-fund accumulation to decumulation, but they need better choices to protect against longevity risk. The author says to enhance retirees' options, policy reforms should level the playing field for annuity products and promote market-driven variety of choice, thus ensuring retirees have at least some funds available to them for the long haul. Policy changes should improve the "infrastructure" for decumulation products by gathering high-quality mortality data and ensuring access to that data for annuity pricing. Policy should also provide the proverbial level playing field by integrating insurance, banking, pension, and tax regulations so these are neutral factors in the consumer decision to annuitize. Other reforms should enhance the ability of private annuity sellers to offer a range of decumulation products and promote consumer education.

Suggested Citation

  • Norma L. Nielson, 2012. "Annuities and Your Nest Egg: Reforms to Promote Optimal Annuitization of Retirement Capital," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 358, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdh:commen:358
    as

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    File URL: https://www.cdhowe.org/public-policy-research/annuities-and-your-nest-egg-reforms-promote-optimal-annuitization-retirement-capital
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Jeffrey R. Brown & Jeffrey R. Kling & Sendhil Mullainathan & Marian V. Wrobel, 2008. "Why Don’t People Insure Late-Life Consumption? A Framing Explanation of the Under-Annuitization Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 304-309, May.
    2. Eytan Sheshinski, 2010. "Refundable Annuities (Annuity Options)," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 12(1), pages 7-21, February.
    3. Mark Kamstra & Rpbert J. Shiller, 2008. "The Case for Trills: Giving Canadians and their Pension Funds a Stake in the Wealth of the Nation," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 271, August.
    4. Monika Bütler & Stefan Staubli, 2010. "Payouts in Switzerland: Explaining Developments in Annuitization," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2010 2010-06, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Pension Papers; Canada; retirement; retirement capital; decumulation;

    JEL classification:

    • J32 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Retirement Plans; Private Pensions
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy

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