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French Retirement Reforms and Intragenerational Equity in Retirement Duration


  • Patrick Aubert

    () (DREES - Direction de la recherche, des études, de l'évaluation et des statistiques (Ministère des Affaires sociales, de la Santé et des Droits des femmes))

  • Cindy Duc

    (DREES - Direction de la recherche, des études, de l'évaluation et des statistiques (Ministère des Affaires sociales, de la Santé et des Droits des femmes))

  • Bruno Ducoudré

    (OFCE - OFCE - Sciences Po)


As most developed countries, France has gone over the last 20 years through a process of pension system reforms, mainly aiming at increasing the average retirement age, through increasing the required number of contribution years or through postponing legal (minimal and/or normal) ages. Public debates over which lever should be preferred have been paramount in France, with concerns focusing on redistribution issues between high wage high life-expectancy and low-wage low life-expectancy workers. In this paper, we empirically address this issue by simulating the differentiated impacts of the past French reforms on average retirement ages across wage quartiles. Our simulations show that increasing the required duration criterion –as was done by the 1993 and 2003 reforms– have redistributive impact as regards retirement age, while increasing the normal age –as was done by the 2010 reform– has a counter-distributive impact. The redistributive impact on average of the required duration criterion however only holds thanks to the fact that disabled workers –most of them in the lowest wage quartile– are exempted from it. Last, increasing minimal age has ambiguous impacts according to gender: redistributive among women but counter-distributive among men.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick Aubert & Cindy Duc & Bruno Ducoudré, 2013. "French Retirement Reforms and Intragenerational Equity in Retirement Duration," Post-Print halshs-01435711, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:halshs-01435711
    DOI: 10.1007/s10645-013-9212-6
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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre, 2003. "The Double Dividend of Postponing Retirement," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 10(4), pages 419-434, August.
    2. Boeri, Tito & Brugiavini, Agar, 2008. "Pension Reforms and Women Retirement Plans," IZA Discussion Papers 3821, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Edward R. Whitehouse & Asghar Zaidi, 2008. "Socio-Economic Differences in Mortality: Implications for Pensions Policy," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 71, OECD Publishing.
    4. Fehr, Hans & Kallweit, Manuel & Kindermann, Fabian, 2012. "Pension reform with variable retirement age: a simulation analysis for Germany," Journal of Pension Economics and Finance, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(03), pages 389-417, July.
    5. repec:dau:papers:123456789/7403 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Karine Briard & Selma Mahfouz, 2011. "Modulations de la retraite selon l’âge de départ : principes directeurs et évolutions depuis les années 1980," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 441(1), pages 15-38.
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    Cited by:

    1. Javier Pla-Porcel & Manuel Ventura-Marco & Carlos Vidal-Meliá, 2017. "How do unisex life care annuities embedded in a pay-as-you-go retirement system affect gender redistribution?," Documentos de Trabajo del ICAE 2017-11, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Instituto Complutense de Análisis Económico.

    More about this item


    retirement behaviour; pensions; microsimulation;

    JEL classification:

    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies


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