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Social Security and Risk Sharing

  • Piero Gottardi
  • Felix Kubler

In this paper we identify conditions under which the introduction of a pay-as-you-go social security system is ex ante Pareto-improving in a stochastic overlapping generations economy with capital accumulation and land. We argue that these conditions are consistent with many calibrations of the model used in the literature. In our model financial markets are complete and competitive equilibria are interim Pareto e¢ cient. Therefore, a welfare improvement can only be obtained if agents' welfare is evaluated exante, and arises from the possibility of inducing, through social security, an improved level of intergenerational risk sharing. We will also examine the optimal size of a given social security system as well as its optimal reform. The analysis will be carried out in a relatively simple set-up, where the various effects of social security, on the prices of long-lived assets and the stock of capital, and hence on output, wages and risky rates of returns, can be clearly identified.

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Paper provided by European University Institute in its series Economics Working Papers with number ECO2009/12.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:eui:euiwps:eco2009/12
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  1. Olovsson, Conny, 2004. "The Welfare Gains of Improving Risk Sharing in Social Security," Seminar Papers 728, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  2. Demange, Gabrielle & Laroque, Guy, 2000. " Social Security, Optimality, and Equilibria in a Stochastic Overlapping Generations Economy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 2(1), pages 1-23.
  3. Kent A. Smetters, 2004. "Trading with the Unborn: A New Perspective on Capital Income Taxation," Working Papers wp066, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  4. Wang Yong, 1993. "Stationary Equilibria in an Overlapping Generations Economy with Stochastic Production," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 423-435, December.
  5. Piero Gottardi & Subir Chattopadhyay, 1999. "- Stochastic Olg Models, Market Structure And Optimality," Working Papers. Serie AD 1999-15, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  6. Feldstein, Martin & Liebman, Jeffrey B., 2002. "Social security," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 32, pages 2245-2324 Elsevier.
  7. Georges de Menil & Eytan Sheshinski, 2004. "Planning for the Optimal Mix of Paygo Tax and Funded Savings," DELTA Working Papers 2004-15, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  8. Laurence Ball & N. Gregory Mankiw, 2007. "Intergenerational Risk Sharing in the Spirit of Arrow, Debreu, and Rawls, with Applications to Social Security Design," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115(4), pages 523-547, 08.
  9. Constantinides, G.M. & Donalson, J.B. & Mehra, R., 1997. "Junior Can't Borrow: A New Perspective on the Equity Premium Puzzle," Papers 97-24, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  10. Rao Aiyagari, S. & Peled, Dan, 1991. "Dominant root characterization of Pareto optimality and the existence of optimal equilibria in stochastic overlapping generations models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 69-83, June.
  11. Peter Diamond & John Geanakoplos, 2003. "Social Security Investment in Equities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1047-1074, September.
  12. Olovsson, Conny, 2010. "Quantifying the risk-sharing welfare gains of social security," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 364-375, April.
  13. Shiller, Robert J., 1999. "Social security and institutions for intergenerational, intragenerational, and international risk-sharing," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 165-204, June.
  14. Roger H. Gordon & Hal R. Varian, 1985. "Intergenerational Risk Sharing," NBER Working Papers 1730, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Henning Bohn, 2004. "Intergenerational Risk Sharing and Fiscal Policy," 2004 Meeting Papers 22, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  16. Enders, Walter & Lapan, Harvey E, 1982. "Social Security Taxation and Intergenerational Risk Sharing," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 23(3), pages 647-58, October.
  17. Krueger, Dirk & Kubler, Felix, 2004. "Computing equilibrium in OLG models with stochastic production," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(7), pages 1411-1436, April.
  18. Ayse Imrohoroglu & Selahattin Imrohoroglu & Douglas H. Joines, 1999. "Social Security in an Overlapping Generations Economy with Land," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(3), pages 638-665, July.
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