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Optimal Fiscal Policy In The Design Of Social Security Reforms

  • Juan C. Conesa
  • Carlos Garriga

The quantitative literature has documented that a privatization of the social security system generates large long-run welfare gains at the cost of welfare losses for transition generations. In this article, we maximize over the entire policy space, following the optimal fiscal policy approach. The resulting allocation, by construction, lies on the constrained Pareto frontier. We find that the optimal design of reforms exhibits sizeable welfare gains arising from a reduction in labor supply distortions. In contrast, the welfare gains coming from the reduction of savings distortions are relatively small. Copyright 2008 by the Economics Department Of The University Of Pennsylvania And Osaka University Institute Of Social And Economic Research Association.

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Article provided by Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association in its journal International Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 49 (2008)
Issue (Month): 1 (02)
Pages: 291-318

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Handle: RePEc:ier:iecrev:v:49:y:2008:i:1:p:291-318
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  1. Luisa Fuster & Ayse Imrohoroglu & Selahattin Imrohoroglu, 2003. "A welfare analysis of social security in a dynastic framework," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(4), pages 1247-1274, November.
  2. Carlos Garriga, 2001. "Optimal Fiscal Policy in Overlapping Generations Models," Working Papers in Economics 66, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
  3. Martin Feldstein, 1995. "Would Privatizing Social Security Raise Economic Welfare?," NBER Working Papers 5281, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Conesa, Juan Carlos & Kitao, Sagiri & Krueger, Dirk, 2006. "Taxing capital? Not a bad idea after all!," CFS Working Paper Series 2006/21, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  5. Andres Erosa & Martin Gervais, 2000. "Optimal taxation in life-cycle economies," Working Paper 00-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  6. Michele Boldrin & Ana Montes, 2004. "The intergenerational state: education and pensions," Staff Report 336, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Dirk Krueger & Felix Kubler, 2006. "Pareto-Improving Social Security Reform when Financial Markets are Incomplete!?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 737-755, June.
  8. Lorenzo Forni, 2005. "Social Security as Markov Equilibrium in OLG Models," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(1), pages 178-194, January.
  9. Homburg, Stefan, 2014. "The Efficiency of Unfunded Pension Schemes," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-523, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
  10. Conesa, Juan Carlos & Garriga, Carlos, 2003. "Status Quo Problem In Social Security Reforms," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(05), pages 691-710, November.
  11. Juan C. Conesa & Dirk Krueger, 1999. "Social Security Reform with Heterogeneous Agents," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(4), pages 757-795, October.
  12. Thomas F. Cooley & Jorge Soares, 1999. "A Positive Theory of Social Security Based on Reputation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(1), pages 135-160, February.
  13. Martin Feldstein & Andrew Samwick, 1996. "The Transition Path in Privatizing Social Security," NBER Working Papers 5761, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Hansen, G D, 1993. "The Cyclical and Secular Behaviour of the Labour Input: Comparing Efficiency Units and Hours Worked," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(1), pages 71-80, Jan.-Marc.
  15. Feldstein, Martin S, 1985. "The Optimal Level of Social Security Benefits," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(2), pages 303-20, May.
  16. Enrique G. Mendoza & Assaf Razin & Linda L. Tesar, 1994. "Effective Tax Rates in Macroeconomics: Cross-Country Estimates of Tax Rates on Factor Incomes and Consumption," NBER Working Papers 4864, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Gale, David, 1973. "Pure exchange equilibrium of dynamic economic models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 12-36, February.
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