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Postponing retirement: the political effect of aging

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  • Galasso, Vincenzo

Abstract

Conventional economic wisdom suggests that because of the aging process, social security systems will have to be retrenched. In particular, retirement age will have to be largely increased. Yet, is this policy measure feasible in OECD countries? Since the answer belongs mainly to the realm of politics, I evaluate the political feasibility of postponing retirement under aging in France, Italy, the UK, and the US. Simulations for the year 2050 steady state demographic, economic and political scenario suggest that retirement age will be postponed in all countries, while the social security contribution rate will rise in all countries, but Italy. The political support for increasing the retirement age stems mainly from the negative income effect induced by aging, which reduces the profitability of the existing social security system, and thus the individuals' net social security wealth.

Suggested Citation

  • Galasso, Vincenzo, 2008. "Postponing retirement: the political effect of aging," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(10-11), pages 2157-2169, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:92:y:2008:i:10-11:p:2157-2169
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Daniel Baksa & Zsuzsa Munkacsi, 2016. "Aging, (Pension) Reforms and the Shadow Economy in Southern Europe," Bank of Lithuania Working Paper Series 32, Bank of Lithuania.
    2. repec:eee:joecag:v:7:y:2016:i:c:p:125-142 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Vincenzo Galasso, 2012. "The Political Feasibility of Postponing Retirement," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 10(4), pages 27-31, December.
    4. Marcin Bielecki & Karolina Goraus & Jan Hagemejer & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2014. "The Sooner The Better - The Welfare Effects of the Retirement Age Increase Under Various Pension Schemes," Working Papers 2014-12, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    5. Krzysztof Makarski & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2017. "On Welfare Effects of Increasing Retirement Age," GRAPE Working Papers 10, GRAPE Group for Research in Applied Economics.
    6. Carlos Bethencourt & Lars Kunze, 2015. "The political economics of redistribution, inequality and tax avoidance," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 163(3), pages 267-287, June.
    7. Amélie Lecocq & Marcelin Joanis, 2013. "Au-delà des certitudes : Pouvoir gris, obésité et autres dimensions incertaines de l’impact budgétaire du vieillissement," Cahiers de recherche 13-08, Departement d'Economique de l'École de gestion à l'Université de Sherbrooke.
    8. Nuscheler, Robert & Roeder, Kerstin, 2013. "The political economy of long-term care," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 154-173.
    9. repec:eee:hapoch:v1_713 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Yuehong Tian & Xianglian Zhao, 2016. "Stochastic Forecast of the Financial Sustainability of Basic Pension in China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(1), pages 1-17, January.
    11. Ryo Arawatari & Tetsuo Ono, 2010. "Retirement and Social Security: A Political Economy Perspective," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 10-04, Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics and Osaka School of International Public Policy (OSIPP).
    12. repec:zbw:rwirep:0238 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. repec:gam:jsusta:v:8:y:2016:i:1:p:46:d:62136 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Bossi, Luca & Gumus, Gulcin, 2013. "Income Inequality, Mobility, And The Welfare State: A Political Economy Model," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 17(06), pages 1198-1226, September.
    15. Jan Hagemejer & Marcin Bielecki & Karolina Goraus & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2014. "The Sooner The Better - The Welfare Effects of the Retirement Age Increase Under Various Pension Schemes," EcoMod2014 6868, EcoMod.
    16. Ryo Arawatari & Tetsuo Ono, 2011. "Retirement and social security: the roles of self-fulfilling expectations and educational investments," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 353-383, December.
    17. Jopp, Tobias Alexander, 2011. "Old Times, Better Times? German Miners' Knappschaften, Pay-as-you-go Pensions, and Implicit Rates of Return, 1854–1913," Ruhr Economic Papers 238, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    18. Karolina Goraus & Krzysztof Makarski & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2014. "Does social security reform reduce gains from increasing the retirement age?," Working Papers 2014-03, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    19. repec:ces:ifodic:v:10:y:2012:i:4:p:19074540 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Joanna Tyrowicz & Krzysztof Makarski & Marcin Bielecki, 2016. "Reforming retirement age in DB and DC pension systems in an aging OLG economy with heterogenous agents," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-36, December.
    21. von Gaessler, Anne Edle & Ziesemer, Thomas, 2016. "Optimal education in times of ageing: The dependency ratio in the Uzawa–Lucas growth model," The Journal of the Economics of Ageing, Elsevier, vol. 7(C), pages 125-142.
    22. Tobias A. Jopp, 2011. "Old Times, Better Times? German Miners’ Knappschaften, Pay-as-you-go Pensions, and Implicit Rates of Return, 1854–1913," Ruhr Economic Papers 0238, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    23. repec:eee:hapoch:v1_381 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Bielecki, Marcin & Goraus, Karolina & Hagemejer, Jan & Tyrowicz, Joanna, 2016. "Decreasing fertility vs increasing longevity: Raising the retirement age in the context of ageing processes," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 52(PA), pages 125-143.

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