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Demographic Change and Pension Reform in Spain: An Assessment in a Two-Earner, OLG Model

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  • Alfonso R. Sánchez Martín
  • Virginia Sánchez Marcos

Abstract

Recent pension reforms in Spain have been guided by two opposite goals, achieving financial stability and improving redistributive aspirations. In particular, reforms implemented in 1997/2002 entailed a mixture of both through (i) changes in the pension formula, (ii) the extension in the entitlement to early retirement to all cohorts, and, finally, (iii) increases in survival pensions. This paper builds an Applied General Equilibrium OLG model that captures the fundamental non-stationarity of the Spanish reality (ageing population, education transition and increasing female's attachment to the labour market) to assess the impact of those reforms. As a novel feature with respect to the literature, households in our model economy are made of two potential earners that make saving and labour supply decisions. Our main conclusions from the analysis are at three different levels. First, the Spanish pension system is clearly unsustainable, the pension expenditure will reach a figure of about 18% of the GDP in 2050, and the reforms have been clearly ineffective in improving the financial prospects of it. Second the reforms have had substantial redistributed effects, benefiting low educated groups against high educated and future cohorts against current cohorts. Finally we show that exploring the financial prospects with traditional single earner households models may result in underestimates of the future financial burden of the pension system.

Suggested Citation

  • Alfonso R. Sánchez Martín & Virginia Sánchez Marcos, 2009. "Demographic Change and Pension Reform in Spain: An Assessment in a Two-Earner, OLG Model," Working Papers 2009-40, FEDEA.
  • Handle: RePEc:fda:fdaddt:2009-40
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. de Grip, Andries & Fouarge, Didier & Montizaan, Raymond, 2020. "Redistribution of individual pension wealth to survivor pensions: Evidence from a stated preferences analysis," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 173(C), pages 402-421.
    3. Yuan-Ho Hsu & Hiroshi Yoshida & Fengming Chen, 2022. "The Impacts of Population Aging on China’s Economy," Global Journal of Emerging Market Economies, Emerging Markets Forum, vol. 14(1), pages 105-130, January.
    4. Vicente Núñez-Antón & Juan Manuel Pérez-Salamero González & Marta Regúlez-Castillo & Carlos Vidal-Meliá, 2020. "Improving the Representativeness of a Simple Random Sample: An Optimization Model and Its Application to the Continuous Sample of Working Lives," Mathematics, MDPI, vol. 8(8), pages 1-27, July.
    5. Esteban García-Miralles & Nezih Guner & Roberto Ramos, 2019. "The Spanish personal income tax: facts and parametric estimates," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 439-477, November.
    6. J. Ignacio Conde-Ruiz & Clara I. González, 2016. "From Bismarck to Beveridge: the other pension reform in Spain," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 7(4), pages 461-490, November.
    7. Ángel de la Fuente & Miguel Ángel García Díaz & Alfonso R. Sánchez, 2019. "La salud financiera del sistema público de pensiones español: proyecciones de largo plazo y factores de riesgo," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 229(2), pages 123-156, June.
    8. J. Ignacio Conde-Ruiz & Clara I. González, 2013. "Reforma de pensiones 2011 en España," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 204(1), pages 9-44, March.
    9. Dudel, Christian & López Gómez, María Andrée & Benavides, Fernando G. & Myrskylä, Mikko, 2018. "The length of working life in Spain: levels, recent trends, and the impact of the financial crisis," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 86990, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    10. Christian Dudel & María Andrée López Gómez & Fernando G. Benavides & Mikko Myrskylä, 2018. "The Length of Working Life in Spain: Levels, Recent Trends, and the Impact of the Financial Crisis," European Journal of Population, Springer;European Association for Population Studies, vol. 34(5), pages 769-791, December.
    11. Darío Serrano-Puente, 2020. "Optimal progressivity of personal income tax: a general equilibrium evaluation for Spain," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 11(4), pages 407-455, December.
    12. Amuedo-Dorantes Catalina & Borra Cristina, 2017. "Retirement Decisions in Recessionary Times: Evidence from Spain," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 17(2), pages 1-21, April.

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