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Can the Dutch meet their own retirement expenditure goals?

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  • de Bresser, Jochem
  • Knoef, Marike

Abstract

Population aging and the poor performance of financial markets during recent years put the sustainability of pension arrangements in many Western countries under pressure. In order to investigate whether the Dutch will be able to cope with possible cutbacks in the generosity of pensions, we analyze their preparedness for retirement in 2008, at the eve of the prolonged slump. In contrast to previous efforts to measure preparedness for retirement, we disentangle the roles of variation in needs and accumulated resources by comparing annuitized wealth from administrative data with self-reports of minimal and preferred expenditures during retirement. In order to draw conclusions that are representative for the Dutch population we estimate a multivariate sample selection model and simulate pension annuities and consumption needs. The model takes into account that some people thought more about retirement than others and that some people found it more difficult than others to answer questions about retirement needs. We find that in the aggregate the Dutch can expect to retire quite comfortably, exceeding their expenditure floors and affording their preferred level of spending. However, both needs and resources vary widely across the sample and about a fifth cannot afford their minimal expenditures even if they would draw down housing wealth.

Suggested Citation

  • de Bresser, Jochem & Knoef, Marike, 2015. "Can the Dutch meet their own retirement expenditure goals?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 100-117.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:34:y:2015:i:c:p:100-117
    DOI: 10.1016/j.labeco.2015.03.014
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Maria Chiuri & Tullio Jappelli, 2010. "Do the elderly reduce housing equity? An international comparison," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 23(2), pages 643-663, March.
    2. Binswanger, Johannes & Schunk, Daniel, 2012. "What is an adequate standard of living during Retirement?," Journal of Pension Economics and Finance, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(02), pages 203-222, April.
    3. Jonathan Skinner, 2007. "Are You Sure You're Saving Enough for Retirement?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 59-80, Summer.
    4. Bound, John & Brown, Charles & Mathiowetz, Nancy, 2001. "Measurement error in survey data," Handbook of Econometrics,in: J.J. Heckman & E.E. Leamer (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 59, pages 3705-3843 Elsevier.
    5. Robert Haveman & Karen Holden & Andrei Romanov & Barbara Wolfe, 2007. "Assessing the maintenance of savings sufficiency over the first decade of retirement," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 14(4), pages 481-502, August.
    6. Engen, Eric & Gale, William & Uccello, Cori, 1999. "The Adequacy of Household Saving," MPRA Paper 56442, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. John Karl Scholz & Ananth Seshadri & Surachai Khitatrakun, 2006. "Are Americans Saving "Optimally" for Retirement?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(4), pages 607-643, August.
    8. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
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    Cited by:

    1. Thomas F. Crossley & Jochem Bresser & Liam Delaney & Joachim Winter, 2017. "Can Survey Participation Alter Household Saving Behaviour?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 127(606), pages 2332-2357, November.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Retirement; Pensions; Savings; Aging;

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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