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Public capital, public pension, and growth


  • Noritaka Maebayashi



This paper constructs an endogenous growth model with overlapping generations, whose engine of economic growth is productive public capital. We investigate a public policy under which the government allocates tax revenue between investment in public capital accumulation and public pension provision. We show that increasing the share of spending on public pensions always reduces economic growth. However, we show numerically that public pension provision improves social welfare and there exists an optimal share of spending on public pension provision unless the value of the time discount factor of the government is sufficiently high. Moreover, we show that in an economy facing an aging population, an increase in social security provision for the old rather than an increase in public investment can be preferable from the viewpoint of social welfare. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Noritaka Maebayashi, 2013. "Public capital, public pension, and growth," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 20(1), pages 89-104, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:itaxpf:v:20:y:2013:i:1:p:89-104
    DOI: 10.1007/s10797-012-9216-1

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Docquier, Frederic & Paddison, Oliver & Pestieau, Pierre, 2007. "Optimal accumulation in an endogenous growth setting with human capital," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 134(1), pages 361-378, May.
    2. Barro, Robert J, 1990. "Government Spending in a Simple Model of Endogenous Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages 103-126, October.
    3. Kelvin R. Utendorf & Rowena A. Pecchenino, 1999. "Social security, social welfare and the aging population," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 12(4), pages 607-623.
    4. Turnovsky, Stephen J., 1997. "Fiscal Policy In A Growing Economy With Public Capital," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(03), pages 615-639, September.
    5. Pecchenino, Rowena A & Pollard, Patricia S, 1997. "The Effects of Annuities, Bequests, and Aging in an Overlapping Generations Model of Endogenous Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(440), pages 26-46, January.
    6. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-I-Martin, 1992. "Public Finance in Models of Economic Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(4), pages 645-661.
    7. Blanchard, Olivier J, 1985. "Debt, Deficits, and Finite Horizons," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(2), pages 223-247, April.
    8. Futagami, Koichi & Morita, Yuichi & Shibata, Akihisa, 1993. " Dynamic Analysis of an Endogenous Growth Model with Public Capital," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 95(4), pages 607-625, December.
    9. Akira Yakita, 2001. "Uncertain lifetime, fertility and social security," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 14(4), pages 635-640.
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    Cited by:

    1. Minoru Watanabe & Yusuke Miyake & Masaya Yasuoka, 2015. "Public Investment Financed By Consumption Tax In An Aging Society," The Singapore Economic Review (SER), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 60(05), pages 1-17, December.
    2. repec:wsi:serxxx:v:62:y:2017:i:02:n:s021759081550068x is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Renuga Nagarajan & Aurora A.C. Teixeira & Sandra T. Silva, 2013. "The impact of population ageing on economic growth: an in-depth bibliometric analysis," FEP Working Papers 505, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.

    More about this item


    Public capital; Social security; Overlapping generations; E62; H54; H55;

    JEL classification:

    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H54 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Infrastructures
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions


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