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The Economics of Population Ageing

  • John Stephenson
  • Grant Scobie

    ()

    (The University of Auckland
    The Treasury)

Demographic forecasts predict that over the next fifty years the proportion of people in New Zealand over the age of 65 will more than double, from 12 percent in 1999 to 26 percent in 2050. This paper reviews potential economic implications of this demographic change in the following broad categories: Demographic change, Labour Markets, Fiscal Impacts, Capital Markets, and Long-run economic growth effects. A synopsis is made of the key economic and demographic issues relating to each category, and the paper highlights those issues to be prioritised in further research. The paper also questions the existing frameworks and methodologies that have been used to study population ageing. Two issues stand out in this regard. Firstly, there is a tendency to view population ageing as a “static” phenomenon. The economic implications of population ageing are pervasive and complex. Future research may benefit from attention to individual behavioural responses to ageing and into the underlying demographic dynamics of population ageing. Secondly, the future economic impacts of an ageing population are inherently uncertain. Future research could well incorporate methodological approaches that attempt to account for these inherent uncertainties.

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File URL: http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/research-policy/wp/2002/02-04/twp02-04.pdf
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Paper provided by New Zealand Treasury in its series Treasury Working Paper Series with number 02/04.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nzt:nztwps:02/04
Contact details of provider: Postal: New Zealand Treasury, PO Box 3724, Wellington, New Zealand
Phone: +64-4-472 2733
Fax: +64-4-473 0982
Web page: http://www.treasury.govt.nz

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  1. Ronald Lee & Jonathan Skinner, 1999. "Will Aging Baby Boomers Bust the Federal Budget?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(1), pages 117-140, Winter.
  2. Peter A. Diamond, 1999. "What Stock Market Returns To Expect For The Future?," Issues in Brief ib-2, Center for Retirement Research.
  3. Dave Turner & Claude Giorno & Alain de Serres & Ann Vourc'h & Pete Richardson, 1998. "The Macroeconomic Implications of Ageing in a Global Context," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 193, OECD Publishing.
  4. John Woods, 2000. "Manual for the Long Term Fiscal Model," Treasury Working Paper Series 00/02, New Zealand Treasury.
  5. Barro, Robert J, 1979. "On the Determination of the Public Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 940-71, October.
  6. Alan J. Auerbach, 1994. "The U.S. Fiscal Problem: Where We Are, How We Got Here and Where We're Going," NBER Working Papers 4709, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Thai-Thanh Dang & Pablo Antolín & Howard Oxley, 2001. "Fiscal Implications of Ageing: Projections of Age-Related Spending," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 305, OECD Publishing.
  8. Bruce Baker & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Willi Leibfritz, 1999. "Generational Accounting in New Zealand," NBER Chapters, in: Generational Accounting around the World, pages 347-368 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Benge, M. & Wells, G., 1998. "Growth in a Small Open Economy," Papers 350, Australian National University - Department of Economics.
  10. Buiter, Willem H., 1998. "Notes on 'A Code for Fiscal Stability'," CEPR Discussion Papers 1831, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Brian McCulloch & Jane Frances, 2001. "Financing New Zealand Superannuation," Treasury Working Paper Series 01/20, New Zealand Treasury.
  12. Alan J. Auerbach & Kevin A. Hassett, 1999. "Uncertainty and the Design of Long-Run Fiscal Policy," NBER Working Papers 7036, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Auerbach, Alan J., 1997. "Quantifying the Current U.S. Fiscal Imbalance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 50(3), pages 387-98, September.
  14. John B. Taylor, 2000. "Reassessing Discretionary Fiscal Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 21-36, Summer.
  15. Polackova, Hana, 1997. "Population aging and financing of government liabilities in New Zealand," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1703, The World Bank.
  16. Deborah Roseveare & Willi Leibfritz & Douglas Fore & Eckhard Wurzel, 1996. "Ageing Populations, Pension Systems and Government Budgets: Simulations for 20 OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 168, OECD Publishing.
  17. Sheetal K. Chand & Albert Jaeger, 1996. "Aging Populations and Public Pension Schemes," IMF Occasional Papers 147, International Monetary Fund.
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