Annuity Markets, Savings, and the Capital Stock
This article examines how the availability of annuities affects savings and inequality in economies in which neither private nor public pensions initially exist. The absence of widespread market or government annuity insurance is clearly descriptive of many less developed countries in the world today; it was also a characteristic of virtually all countries prior to World War II. The paper compares economies with perfect insurance with economies in which completely selfish parents and children pool longevity risk to their mutual advantage. The analysis of the latter economies takes into account the infinite sequence of risk sharing bargains of successive parents with their children. Such bargains affect current risk sharing between parents and child because they determine the welfare of current children when they become parents. Calculations based on the CBS utility function indicate that perfecting annuity insurance can significantly reduce national savings. Indeed, the insurance aspects of government pensions are potentially as important as underfunding government pensions in reducing national savings.
|Date of creation:||Dec 1983|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Kotlikoff, Laurence J., John B. Shoven and Avia Spivak. "Annuity Markets, Savings, and the Capital Stock." Issues in Pension Economics, edited by Zvi Bodie, John Shoven and David A. Wise, Chicago: UCP, 1987.|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
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- Kotlikoff, Laurence J & Summers, Lawrence H, 1981.
"The Role of Intergenerational Transfers in Aggregate Capital Accumulation,"
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151, UCLA Department of Economics.
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225, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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- Nash, John, 1953. "Two-Person Cooperative Games," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 21(1), pages 128-140, April.
- Davies, James B, 1981. "Uncertain Lifetime, Consumption, and Dissaving in Retirement," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(3), pages 561-77, June.
- Abel, Andrew B, 1985. "Precautionary Saving and Accidental Bequests," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 777-91, September.
- Eckstein, Zvi & Eichenbaum, Martin & Peled, Dan, 1985. "Uncertain lifetimes and the welfare enhancing properties of annuity markets and social security," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 303-326, April.
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