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Einkommens- und Vermögenssituation der Babyboomer


  • Michela Coppola


Over the past years, the financial situation and the retirement prospects of the so-called babyboomers (people born during the demographic Post-World War II baby-boom) have become source of public concern and has attracted a great deal of attention in the US. In Germany, on the contrary, the question how are the baby-boomers financially doing has been relatively rarely analyzed. Using data from the study "Saving and old-age provision in Germany" (SAVE), this paper describes the actual income and financial position of the German baby-boomers and offers an outlook on their expected social security income. It turns out that the actual income and financial situation of the German baby-boomers is relatively good: despite having experienced rather discontinuous employment histories, the household's incomes of the baby-boomers are comparable to those of different cohorts at the same age. Moreover their average and median financial wealth is higher than for earlier birth cohort However, the outlook for the future is more worryingly, as the lower expected retirement age of this cohort implies cuts in the amount of their state pension benefits. For the majority of the households, the accumulated wealth appears to be not enough to compensate for these cuts. The message that the state pension alone will not be enough to finance consumption in the old-age has been understood by the baby-boomers: more has to be done to prolong their working life. Die finanzielle Lage und die Rentenaussichten der so genannten Babyboomer (Menschen, die den geburtenstarken Jahrgängen der Nachkriegszeit angehören) gaben in den letzten Jahren in den USA Anlass zur Besorgnis und haben große Aufmerksamkeit erregt. In Deutschland hingegen wurde die Frage, wie es den Babyboomern finanziell geht, bisher nur selten behandelt. Auf Grundlage der Studie "Sparen und Altersvorsorge in Deutschland" (SAVE) wird die heutige Einkommens- und Vermögenssituation der Babyboomer untersucht. Hieraus ergeben sich erste Erkenntnisse über die zukünftige Alterssicherung dieser Generation. Es zeigt sich, dass gegenüber anderen Kohorten sowohl die Einkommenssituation als auch die Vermögenssituation der deutschen Babyboomer relativ gut ist. Trotz der häufigeren Arbeitslosigkeit entspricht das durchschnittliche verfügbare monatliche Nettoeinkommen der Babyboomer-Haushalte dem von anderen Kohorten im gleichen Alter. Zudem haben sie ein größeres Geldvermögen als die vorherige Generation akkumuliert. Die zu erwartende Einkommenssituation nach Renteneintritt ist aber nicht so erfreulich, da insbesondere das niedrige erwartete Renteneintrittsalter für deutliche Rentenkürzungen sorgen kann. Inwieweit diese potenzielle Abschläge durch privates Vermögen abgefedert werden können, kann man nicht abschließend sagen: Für eine große Mehrheit der Haushalte scheint allerdings das bisher akkumulierte Nettovermögen nicht genug zu sein. Die Botschaft, dass in Zukunft die staatliche Rente allein nicht mehr ausreichen wird, um den erreichten Wohlstand erhalten zu können, scheint auch bei den Babyboomern angekommen zu sein: Wenn das Altersarmutsrisiko dieser Generation vermindert werden soll, sollte das Arbeitsleben verlängert und durch Weiterbildung die Kompetenzen und Arbeitsfähigkeit gestärkt werden.

Suggested Citation

  • Michela Coppola, 2011. "Einkommens- und Vermögenssituation der Babyboomer," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 80(4), pages 31-50.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwvjh:80-4-3

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jan Goebel & Markus M. Grabka, 2011. "Entwicklung der Altersarmut in Deutschland," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 80(2), pages 101-118.
    2. David A. Love & Paul A. Smith & Lucy C. McNair, 2008. "A New Look At The Wealth Adequacy Of Older U.S. Households," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 54(4), pages 616-642, December.
    3. Julia Simonson & Laura Romeu Gordo & Nadiya Kelle, 2011. "The Double German Transformation: Changing Male Employment Patterns in East and West Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 391, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    4. Jan Goebel & Markus M. Grabka, 2011. "Zur Entwicklung der Altersarmut in Deutschland," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 78(25), pages 3-16.
    5. Miriam Beblo & Elke Wolf, 2002. "Die Folgekosten von Erwerbsunterbrechungen," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 71(1), pages 83-94.
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    Cited by:

    1. Christian Westermeier & Anika Rasner & Markus M. Grabka, 2012. "The Prospects of the Baby Boomers: Methodological Challenges in Projecting the Lives of an Aging Cohort," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 440, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    2. Fehr, Hans & Kallweit, Manuel & Kindermann, Fabian, 2013. "Should pensions be progressive?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 94-116.

    More about this item


    Baby boomer; savings; retirement decisions; wealth holdings; cohort comparison; portfolio composition;

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies


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