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Pension Inequality


  • Edward P. Lazear
  • Sherwin Rosen


Pensions may contribute to male/female or black/white inequality to the extent that white males are more likely to receive pensions than are other groups. Conditional on receiving pensions, the value of pension benefits varies because white males have the highest level of expected tenure atretirement. By using a combination of the Current Population Survey and the 1980 Banker's Trust Corpprate Pension Plan Study, we find that the existence of pension plans contributes to black/white inequality but leaves male/female inequality unchanged among whites. Even though females are less likely tor eceive pensions than males, those females who do receive pensions enjoy generous ones. Among blacks, pensions exacerbate sex differences because black women are only about 75% as likely to receive pensions as black males.

Suggested Citation

  • Edward P. Lazear & Sherwin Rosen, 1984. "Pension Inequality," NBER Working Papers 1477, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1477
    Note: LS

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    • Edward P. Lazear & Sherwin Rosen, 1987. "Pension Inequality," NBER Chapters,in: Issues in Pension Economics, pages 341-364 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lillard, Lee A & Willis, Robert J, 1978. "Dynamic Aspects of Earning Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 985-1012, September.
    2. Lillard, Lee A, 1977. "Inequality: Earnings vs. Human Wealth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 42-53, March.
    3. Jacob Mincer & Boyan Jovanovic, 1981. "Labor Mobility and Wages," NBER Chapters,in: Studies in Labor Markets, pages 21-64 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Lazear, Edward, 1979. "The Narrowing of Black-White Wage Differentials Is Illusory," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(4), pages 553-564, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pozzebon, Silvana & Mitchell, Olivia S, 1989. "Married Women's Retirement Behavior," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 2(1), pages 39-53.
    2. Mitchell, Olivia S, 1991. "Social Security Reforms and Poverty among Older Dual-Earner Couples," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 4(4), pages 281-293, November.
    3. Alan L. Gustman & Thomas L. Steinmeier, 1988. "An Analysis Of Pension Benefit Formulas, Pension Wealth And Incentives From Pensions," NBER Working Papers 2535, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Aggarwal, Raj & Goodell, John W., 2013. "Political-economy of pension plans: Impact of institutions, gender, and culture," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 1860-1879.
    5. Mitchell, Olivia S, 1988. "Worker Knowledge of Pension Provisions," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 6(1), pages 21-39, January.
    6. Janet Currie, 1993. "Gender Gaps in Benefits Coverage," NBER Working Papers 4265, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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