IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cor/louvco/2015043.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Optimal fertility under age-dependent labor productivity

Author

Listed:
  • PESTIEAU, P.

    () (Université de Liège, CORE, PSE and CEPR)

  • PONTHIERE, G.

    () (Universite Paris East and PSE)

Abstract

In the so-called Rapport Sauvy (1962), the French demographer Alfred Sauvy argued that Wallonia’s fertility rate was socially suboptimal, and recommended a 20 % rise of fertility, on the grounds that a society with too low a fertility leads to a low-productive economy composed of old workers having old ideas. This paper examines how Sauvy’s intuition can be incorporated in the seminal Samuelsonian optimal fertility model (Samuelson 1975). For that purpose, we build a 4-period OLG model with physical capital and with two generations of workers (young and old), the skills of the latter being subject to some form of decay. We characterize the optimal fertility rate, and show that this equalizes, at the margin, the sum of the capital dilution effect (Solow effect) and the labor age-composition effect (Sauvy effect) with the intergenerational redistribution effect (Samuelson effect). Finally, we develop a numerical example, and examine how Sauvy’s recommendation can be reconcilied with facts.

Suggested Citation

  • Pestieau, P. & Ponthiere, G., 2015. "Optimal fertility under age-dependent labor productivity," CORE Discussion Papers 2015043, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2015043
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.uclouvain.be/cps/ucl/doc/core/documents/coredp2015_43web.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Michel, Philippe & Pestieau, P, 1993. "Population Growth and Optimality: When Does Serendipity Hold?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 6(4), pages 353-362, November.
    2. David Croix & Pierre Pestieau & Grégory Ponthière, 2012. "How powerful is demography? The Serendipity Theorem revisited," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 25(3), pages 899-922, July.
    3. van Ours, J.C. & Stoeldraijer, L., 2010. "Age, Wage and Productivity," Discussion Paper 2010-12, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    4. Deardorff, Alan V, 1976. "The Optimum Growth Rate for Population: Comment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 17(2), pages 510-515, June.
    5. Blackorby,Charles & Bossert,Walter & Donaldson,David J., 2005. "Population Issues in Social Choice Theory, Welfare Economics, and Ethics," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521532587.
    6. Richard Blundell & Martin Browning & Costas Meghir, 1994. "Consumer Demand and the Life-Cycle Allocation of Household Expenditures," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(1), pages 57-80.
    7. Börsch-Supan, Axel & Weiss, Matthias, 2016. "Productivity and age: Evidence from work teams at the assembly line," The Journal of the Economics of Ageing, Elsevier, vol. 7(C), pages 30-42.
    8. Jeremy Greenwood & Ananth Seshadri & Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2005. "The Baby Boom and Baby Bust," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 183-207, March.
    9. Christian Göbel & Thomas Zwick, 2012. "Age and Productivity: Sector Differences," De Economist, Springer, vol. 160(1), pages 35-57, March.
    10. Del Rey, Elena & Lopez-Garcia, Miguel-Angel, 2013. "Optimal education and pensions in an endogenous growth model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 148(4), pages 1737-1750.
    11. Vegard Skirbekk, 2004. "Age and Individual Productivity: A Literature Survey," Vienna Yearbook of Population Research, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna, vol. 2(1), pages 133-154.
    12. Gemma Abio, 2003. "Interiority of the optimal population growth rate with endogenous fertility," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 10(4), pages 1-7.
    13. Boucekkine, Raouf & de la Croix, David & Licandro, Omar, 2002. "Vintage Human Capital, Demographic Trends, and Endogenous Growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 340-375, June.
    14. Ng, Yew-Kwang, 1986. "Social criteria for evaluating population change: An alternative to the Blackorby-Donaldson criterion," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 375-381, April.
    15. Stoeldraijer, Lenny & van Ours, Jan C, 2010. "Age, wage and productivity," CEPR Discussion Papers 7713, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    16. Stelter, Robert, 2016. "Over-aging — Are present-day human populations too old?," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 116-143.
    17. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:10:y:2003:i:4:p:1-7 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Pierre Pestieau & Gregory Ponthiere, 2014. "Optimal fertility along the life cycle," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 55(1), pages 185-224, January.
    19. Samuelson, Paul A, 1975. "The Optimum Growth Rate for Population," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 16(3), pages 531-538, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Grégory Ponthière, 2018. "A Theory of Reverse Retirement," PSE Working Papers halshs-01789651, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    optimal fertility; age structure; overlapping generations; social optimum;

    JEL classification:

    • E13 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Neoclassical
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • H13 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Economics of Eminent Domain; Expropriation; Nationalization
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2015043. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alain GILLIS). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/coreebe.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.