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Optimal Fertility along the Lifecycle

  • Pierre Pestieau

    (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - École des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC) - École normale supérieure [ENS] - Paris - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA), EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, CREPP - Center of Research in Public Economics and Population Economics - Université de Liège, CORE - Center of Operation Research and Econometrics [Louvain] - Université Catholique de Louvain (UCL) - Belgique, CEPR - Center for Economic Policy Research - CEPR)

  • Grégory Ponthière

    (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - École des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC) - École normale supérieure [ENS] - Paris - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA), EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, ENS Paris - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - École normale supérieure [ENS] - Paris)

We explore the optimal fertility age-pattern in a four-period OLG economy with physical capital accumulation. For that purpose, we .rstly compare the dynamics of two closed economies, Early and Late Islands, which di¤er only in the timing of births. On Early Island, children are born from parents in young adulthood, whereas, on Late Island, children are born from parents in older adulthood. We show that, unlike on Early Island, there exists no stable stationary equilibrium on Late Island, which exhibits cyclical dynamics. We also characterize the social optimum in each economy, and show that Samuelson.s Serendipity Theorem still holds. Finally, we study the dynamics and social optimum of an economy with interior fertility rates during the reproduction period. It is shown that various fertility age-patterns are compatible with the social optimum, as long as these yield the optimal cohort growth rate. The Serendipity Theorem remains valid in that broader demographic environment.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series PSE Working Papers with number hal-00612609.

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Date of creation: Jul 2011
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Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:hal-00612609
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  1. G. Abío & Geraldine Mahieu & Cio Patxot, 2003. "On the Optimality of PAYG Pension Systems in an Endogenous Fertility Setting," CESifo Working Paper Series 1050, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521551861 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Michel, Philippe & Pestieau, P, 1993. "Population Growth and Optimality: When Does Serendipity Hold?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 353-62, November.
  4. John Ermisch & David Pevalin, 2005. "Early motherhood and later partnerships," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 18(3), pages 469-489, 09.
  5. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:10:y:2003:i:4:p:1-7 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Ermisch, John & Ogawa, Naohiro, 1994. "Age at Motherhood in Japan," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 7(4), pages 393-420, November.
  7. Heather Joshi, 2002. "Production, Reproduction, and Education: Women, Children, and Work in a British Perspective," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 28(3), pages 445-474.
  8. Gemma Abio, 2003. "Interiority of the optimal population growth rate with endogenous fertility," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 10(4), pages 1-7.
  9. Hippolyte D'Albis & Emmanuelle Augeraud-Véron & Katheline Schubert, 2010. "Demographic-economic equilibria when the age at motherhood is endogenous," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00547274, HAL.
  10. David de la CROIX & Pierre PESTIEAU & Gregory PONTHIERE, 2009. "How Powerful is Demography? The Serendipity Theorem Revisited," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2009040, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  11. Klaus Jaeger & Wolfgang Kuhle, 2009. "The optimum growth rate for population reconsidered," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 22(1), pages 23-41, January.
  12. de la Croix, David & Mahieu, Géraldine & Rillaers, Alexandra, 2000. "How should retirement policy adjust to the baby bust ?," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2001003, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  13. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521001151 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Blackburn, Keith & Cipriani, Giam Pietro, 2002. "A model of longevity, fertility and growth," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 187-204, February.
  15. Siv Gustafsson, 2001. "Optimal age at motherhood. Theoretical and empirical considerations on postponement of maternity in Europe," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 225-247.
  16. 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 531-38, October.
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