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Consumer Confusion; The Choice of AFORE

Author

Listed:
  • Moisés J. Schwartz
  • Enrique E. Domínguez
  • Roberto Calderón-Colín

Abstract

This paper was prepared for the World Bank 4th Annual Contractual Savings Conference (Washington DC, April 2008) co-organized by Gregorio Impavido (gimpavido@imf.org). The article shows that account transfers among pension administrators in Mexico barely respond to price or return considerations and in general has not improved the consumer's pension balance. Instead of strengthening competition through lower fees and higher returns for the consumer, AFORE switching has so far undermined the system and resulted in the destruction of value. Moreover, "noisy" evaluations of the product by the consumer tend to undermine the power of competition. Thus, an increased number of pension fund managers has not provided a more competitive environment. The theoretical framework allows for the estimation of "noise" and mark-ups in the AFORE industry. As the number of AFOREs increases, the mark-up diminishes at a very slow rate. This implies that more participants in the industry will hardly affect prices.

Suggested Citation

  • Moisés J. Schwartz & Enrique E. Domínguez & Roberto Calderón-Colín, 2008. "Consumer Confusion; The Choice of AFORE," IMF Working Papers 08/177, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:08/177
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Esther Duflo & Emmanuel Saez, 2003. "The Role of Information and Social Interactions in Retirement Plan Decisions: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(3), pages 815-842.
    4. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1995. "Product Differentiation and Oligopoly in International Markets: The Case of the U.S. Automobile Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 891-951, July.
    5. Diamond, Peter A., 1971. "A model of price adjustment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 156-168, June.
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    7. Rodrigo Cerda, 2006. "Movilidad en la Cartera de Cotizantes por AFP: La Importancia de ser Primero en Rentabilidad," Documentos de Trabajo 309, Instituto de Economia. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile..
    8. David Laibson & Xavier Gabaix, 2004. "Competition and Consumer Confusion," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 663, Econometric Society.
    9. Xavier Gabaix & David Laibson & Hongyi Li, 2005. "Extreme Value Theory and the Effects of Competition on Profits," Levine's Bibliography 784828000000000656, UCLA Department of Economics.
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    Cited by:

    1. Emma Aguila & Michael D. Hurd & Susann Rohwedder, 2008. "Pension Reform in Mexico: The Evolution of Pension Fund Management Fees and their Effect on Pension Balances," Working Papers wp196, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
    2. Emma Aguila & Michael D. Hurd & Susann Rohwedder, 2014. "How Do Management Fees Affect Retirement Wealth Under Mexico’s Personal Retirement Accounts System?," Working Papers WR-1023, RAND Corporation.

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