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Health, Pension Benefits and Longevity How They Affect Household Savings?

  • Oliveira Martins, Joaquim
  • El Mekkaoui de Freitas, Najat

This paper analyses the impact of health, pension systems and longevity on savings. It uses a simple life-cycle model embodying social transfers (health care and pension expenditures) and changes in longevity to determine the level of household savings. From this model, we derived an econometric specification, augmented with the effects of public budget balances. The model is estimated for a panel of 22 OECD countries for the period 1970-2009. Our principal result is that, from the point of view of incentive to save, health transfers have a similar impact as pension replacement rates. Therefore, welfare reforms that reduce replacement rates without reforming health system may not have all the expected impact on household savings. In line with life-cycle theory, we found that longevity increases saving ratios.

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Paper provided by Paris Dauphine University in its series Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine with number 123456789/12130.

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Date of creation: Apr 2014
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Publication status: Published in The Journal of the Economics of Ageing, 2014, Vol. 3
Handle: RePEc:dau:papers:123456789/12130
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  1. Shankha Chakraborty, 2002. "Endogenous Lifetime and Economic Growth," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2002-03, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 26 Jan 2002.
  2. Börsch-Supan, Axel & Reil-Held, Anette & Rodepeter, Ralf & Schnabel, Reinhold & Winter, Joachim, 2000. "The German Savings Puzzle," Discussion Papers 594, Institut fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre und Statistik, Abteilung fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre.
  3. B. Douglas Bernheim & Jonathan Skinner & Steven Weinberg, 2001. "What Accounts for the Variation in Retirement Wealth among U.S. Households?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 832-857, September.
  4. David E. Bloom & David Canning & Bryan Graham, 2003. "Longevity and Life-cycle Savings," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 105(3), pages 319-338, 09.
  5. Michael Hurd & Susann Rohwedder, 2004. "The Retirement-Consumption Puzzle: Anticipated and Actual Declines in Spending at Retirement," Working Papers wp069, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  6. David Bloom & David Canning & Rick Mansfield & Michael Moore, 2006. "Demographic Change, Social Security Systems, and Savings," PGDA Working Papers 1906, Program on the Global Demography of Aging.
  7. Feldstein, Martin S, 1974. "Social Security, Induced Retirement, and Aggregate Capital Accumulation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(5), pages 905-26, Sept./Oct.
  8. Milton Friedman, 1957. "A Theory of the Consumption Function," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number frie57-1, August.
  9. Martin Browning & Thomas F. Crossley, 2001. "The Life-Cycle Model of Consumption and Saving," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(3), pages 3-22, Summer.
  10. Blau, David M., 2007. "Retirement and Consumption in a Life Cycle Model," IZA Discussion Papers 2986, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Bosworth, Barry & Burtless, Gary, 2004. "Pension Reform and Saving," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 57(3), pages 703-27, September.
  12. Tim Callen & Christian Thimann, 1997. "Empirical Determinants of Household Saving; Evidence From OECD Countries," IMF Working Papers 97/181, International Monetary Fund.
  13. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  14. Mariacristina De Nardi & Eric French & John Bailey Jones, 2009. "Why do the elderly save? the role of medical expenses," Working Paper Series WP-09-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  15. Edwards, Sebastian, 1996. "Why are Latin America's savings rates so low? An international comparative analysis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 5-44, October.
  16. John Karl Scholz & Ananth Seshadri & Surachai Khitatrakun, 2004. "Are Americans Saving "Optimally" for Retirement?," NBER Working Papers 10260, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Rosa Aisa & Fernando Pueyo, 2013. "Population aging, health care, and growth: a comment on the effects of capital accumulation," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 26(4), pages 1285-1301, October.
  18. Milton Friedman, 1957. "Introduction to "A Theory of the Consumption Function"," NBER Chapters, in: A Theory of the Consumption Function, pages 1-6 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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