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Privatizing Social Security

Author

Listed:
  • Thomas Cooley

    (University of Rochester)

  • Jorge Soares

    (George Washington University)

Abstract

This paper studies the political sustainability of the existing pay-as-you-go social security system in the face of recent demographic patterns. We analyze different approaches to privatizing the system and consider what it would require for them to be politically implementable. The analysis is based on an overlapping generations economy where an initial generation would choose to implement a pay-as-you-go social insurance system. We study the sustainability of this system in each subsequent period. We describe some transitions policies that make the current generations of agents at least as well off as the maintenance of the social security system. All feasible transition policies use debt to finance the benefits during the transition period shifting at least some of the cost to unborn generations. (Copyright: Elsevier)

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Cooley & Jorge Soares, 1999. "Privatizing Social Security," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(3), pages 731-755, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:issued:v:2:y:1999:i:3:p:731-755
    DOI: 10.1006/redy.1999.0069
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. 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.
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    4. David E. Altig & Jagadeesh Gokhale, 1997. "Social Security privatization: a simple proposal," Working Papers (Old Series) 9703, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    5. Joines, Douglas H, 1981. "Estimates of Effective Marginal Tax Rates on Factor Incomes," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 191-226, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Axel Börsch‐Supan & Alexander Ludwig & Joachim Winter, 2006. "Ageing, Pension Reform and Capital Flows: A Multi‐Country Simulation Model," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 73(292), pages 625-658, November.
    2. Hans Fehr & Sabine Jokisch & Laurence J Kotlikoff, 2006. "Will China Eat Our Lunch or Take Us to Dinner? Simulating the Transition Paths of the US, EU, Japan and China," RBA Annual Conference Volume (Discontinued), in: Christopher Kent & Anna Park & Daniel Rees (ed.),Demography and Financial Markets, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    3. Axel Börsch‐Supan & Florian Heiss & Alexander Ludwig & Joachim Winter, 2003. "Pension Reform, Capital Markets and the Rate of Return," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 4(2), pages 151-181, May.
    4. Juan F. Jimeno, "undated". "El sistema de pensiones contributivas en España: Cuestiones básicas y perspectivas en el medio plazo," Working Papers 2000-15, FEDEA.
    5. Yvonne Adema & Lex Meijdam & Harrie Verbon, 2009. "The international spillover effects of pension reform," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 16(5), pages 670-696, October.
    6. Hans Fehr, 2009. "Computable Stochastic Equilibrium Models and Their Use in Pension- and Ageing Research," De Economist, Springer, vol. 157(4), pages 359-416, December.
    7. Jokisch, Sabine & Kotlikoff, Laurence J., 2007. "Simulating the Dynamic Macroeconomic and Microeconomic Effects of the FairTax," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 60(2), pages 225-252, June.
    8. Casarico, Alessandra & Devillanova, Carlo, 2008. "Capital-skill complementarity and the redistributive effects of Social Security Reform," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3-4), pages 672-683, April.
    9. Vincenzo Galasso & Paola Profeta, 2004. "Lessons for an ageing society: the political sustainability of social security systems [‘Assessing dynamic efficiency: theory and evidence’]," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 19(38), pages 64-115.
    10. Juan F. Jimeno, "undated". "Incentivos y desigualdad en el sistema español de pensiones contributivas de jubilación," Working Papers 2002-13, FEDEA.
    11. Thomas A. Garrett & Russell M. Rhine, 2005. "Social security versus private retirement accounts: a historical analysis," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, vol. 87(Mar), pages 103-121.
    12. Assaf Razin & Efraim Sadka, 2003. "Privatizing Social Security Under Balanced-Budget Constraints: A Political-Economy Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 1039, CESifo.
    13. Simon Gilchrist & Egon Zakrajsek, 2007. "Investment and the Cost of Capital: New Evidence from the Corporate Bond Market," NBER Working Papers 13174, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Hans Fehr & Sabine Jokisch & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 2005. "Will China Eat Our Lunch or Take Us Out to Dinner? Simulating the Transition Paths of the U.S., EU, Japan, and China," NBER Working Papers 11668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Marko Köthenbürger & Panu Poutvaara, 2002. "Social Security Reform and Intergenerational Trade: Is there Scope for a Pareto-Improvement?," CESifo Working Paper Series 795, CESifo.
    16. D'Amato, Marcello & Galasso, Vincenzo, 2002. "Aggregate Risk, Political Constraints and Social Security Design," CEPR Discussion Papers 3330, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    17. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas & Lovely, Mary E. & Tosun, Mehmet S., 2004. "Generational conflict, fiscal policy, and economic growth," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 1-23, March.
    18. 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.
    19. Mateos-Planas, Xavier, 2008. "A quantitative theory of social security without commitment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3-4), pages 652-671, April.
    20. M. Dudek Carolyn & Pieter Omtzigt, 2001. "Globalization's challenge to pension reform in Western Europe," Economics and Quantitative Methods qf0107, Department of Economics, University of Insubria.
    21. Galasso, Vincenzo & Profeta, Paola, 2002. "The political economy of social security: a survey," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 1-29, March.
    22. Georg Hirte, 2003. "The Political Feasibility of Privatizing Old‐Age Insurance," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 50(4), pages 507-525, September.
    23. Cerda, Rodrigo A., 2008. "The Chilean pension reform: A model to follow?," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 541-558.
    24. Carmen Alvarez-Albelo, 2004. "Endogenous versus exogenous efficiency units of labour for the quantitative study of social security: two examples," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(11), pages 693-697.
    25. Kotlikoff, Laurence J. & Smetters, Kent & Walliser, Jan, 2007. "Mitigating America's demographic dilemma by pre-funding social security," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 247-266, March.

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