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The Effects of Subjective Survival on Retirements and Social Security Claiming

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  • Michael D. Hurd
  • James P. Smith
  • Julie Zissimopoulos

Abstract

According to the life-cycle model, mortality risk will influence both retirement and the desire to annuitize wealth. We estimate the effect of subjective survival probabilities on retirement and on the claiming of Social Security benefits because delayed claiming is equivalent to the purchase of additional Social Security annuities. We find that those with very low subjective probabilities of survival retire earlier and claim earlier than those with higher subjective probabilities, but the effects are not large. The great majority of workers claim as soon as they are eligible. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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Suggested Citation

  • Michael D. Hurd & James P. Smith & Julie Zissimopoulos, 2003. "The Effects of Subjective Survival on Retirements and Social Security Claiming," Working Papers DRU-3008, RAND Corporation.
  • Handle: RePEc:ran:wpaper:dru-3008
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jeffrey R. Brown & Mark J. Warshawsky, 2001. "Longevity-Insured Retirement Distributions from Pension Plans: Market and Regulatory Issues," NBER Working Papers 8064, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Kotlikoff, Laurence J & Spivak, Avia, 1981. "The Family as an Incomplete Annuities Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(2), pages 372-391, April.
    3. Coile, Courtney & Diamond, Peter & Gruber, Jonathan & Jousten, Alain, 2002. "Delays in claiming social security benefits," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(3), pages 357-385, June.
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    6. Michael D. Hurd & Kathleen McGarry, 2002. "The Predictive Validity of Subjective Probabilities of Survival," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(482), pages 966-985, October.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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