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Steuerfinanzierung von Sozialleistungen? / Tax Funding of Social Security Benefits?: Verteilungs- und Effizienzeffekte einer Umfinanzierung von Sozialleistungen in der gesetzlichen Renten- und Krankenversicherung / Distribution and Efficiency Effects from Refinancing of Social Security Benefits in the State Pension and Health Insurance System


  • Jess Heinrich

    () (Deutsche Rentenversicherung Bund, Geschäftsbereich Finanzen, Bereich Finanzierung und Verteilung, D-10704, Berlin, Germany)


Many studies’ regulatory aim is to have non-insurance entitlements of the social insurance system funded by taxes. Since most studies use (macro)econometric methods, changes in household behaviour are not shown and the allocative effects resulting from tax funding are not sufficiently taken into consideration. It is the intention of the present study to fill this gap. A numerical equilibrium model of overlapping generations with a disaggregated household sector is used in the study. Differentiation is made according to occupational groups and income brackets. Furthermore, the relevant interdependences between tax and social law are modelled at the household level. The study examines the impact of partial tax funding of benefits of the state health and pension insurance. Since the resulting efficiency effects are explicitly derived, it is shown that from an allocative point of view the combined funding from higher income and consumer taxes, which is often favoured for distributional purposes, is inferior to a pure funding from consumer taxes. Combined funding is not needed, since the primary assumption of a regressive burden on contributors resulting from a consumer tax increase does not arise in the simulation study. In addition, it is shown that partial funding of health care benefits by consumer tax increases is not associated with an excess burden. Of all the examined funding alternatives, such a partial funding seems to be superior due to allocative neutrality and the resulting distributional effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Jess Heinrich, 2006. "Steuerfinanzierung von Sozialleistungen? / Tax Funding of Social Security Benefits?: Verteilungs- und Effizienzeffekte einer Umfinanzierung von Sozialleistungen in der gesetzlichen Renten- und Kranken," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 226(4), pages 436-462, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:jns:jbstat:v:226:y:2006:i:4:p:436-462

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hans Fehr & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Willi Leibfritz, 1999. "Generational Accounting in General Equilibrium," NBER Chapters,in: Generational Accounting around the World, pages 43-72 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Hans Fehr & Heinrich Jess, 2006. "Health premiums or health contributions? An evaluation of health care reform options in Germany," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 126(1), pages 20-57.
    3. Fehr, Hans, 1999. "Welfare Effects of Dynamic Tax Reforms," Beiträge zur Finanzwissenschaft, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, edition 1, volume 5, number urn:isbn:9783161470165.
    4. Alexander Ludwig, 2005. "Moment estimation in Auerbach-Kotlikoff models: How well do they match the data?," MEA discussion paper series 05093, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
    5. Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Kent Smetters & Jan Walliser, 2001. "Finding a Way Out of America's Demographic Dilemma," NBER Working Papers 8258, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Stefan Bach, 2005. "Koalitionsvertrag: Belastungen durch Mehrwertsteuererhöhung werden nur zum Teil durch Senkung der Sozialbeiträge kompensiert," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 72(47), pages 705-714.
    7. Jess Heinrich, 2004. "Selbständige in die gesetzliche Rentenversicherung? / Should Self-employed Persons Subject to the Statutory Pay-as-you-go Pension System?: Wohlfahrtseffekte einer Ausweitung der Versicherungspflicht /," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 224(3), pages 292-316, June.
    8. Lawrence H. Summers, 1981. "Taxation and Corporate Investment: A q-Theory Approach," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, pages 67-140.
    9. Hans Fehr & Heinrich Jess, 2007. "Who Benefits from the Reform of Pension Taxation in Germany?," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, pages 73-101.
    10. Volker Meinhardt & Rudolf Zwiener, 1997. "Steuerfinanzierung von versicherungsfremden Leistungen in der Sozialversicherung," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 66(3/4), pages 352-361.
    11. Feil, Michael & Zika, Gerd, 2005. "Politikberatung mit dem Simulationsmodell PACE-L : Möglichkeiten und Grenzen am Beispiel einer Senkung der Sozialabgaben," IAB-Forschungsbericht 200517, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
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