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The Effects of Longevity and Distortions on Education and Retirement

  • Samuel de Abreu Pessoa
  • Pedro Cavalcanti Ferreira


    (EPGE Getulio Vargas)

This article studies the impact of longevity and taxation on life-cycle decisions and long-run income. Individuals allocate optimally their total lifetime between education, working and retirement. They also decide at each moment how much to save or consume out of their income, and after entering the labor market how to divide their time between labor and leisure. The model incorporates experience-earnings profiles and the return-to-education function that follows evidence from the labor literature. In this setup, increases in longevity raises the investment in education - time in school - and retirement. The model is calibrated to the U.S. and is able to reproduce observed schooling levels and the increase in retirement, as the evidence shows. Simulations show that a country equal to the U.S. but with 20% smaller longevity will be 25% poorer. In this economy, labor taxes have a strong impact on the per capita income, as it decreases labor effort, time at school and retirement age, in addition to the general equilibrium impact on physical capital. We conclude that life-cycle effects are relevant in analyzing the aggregate outcome of taxation.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2005 Meeting Papers with number 424.

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Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:red:sed005:424
Contact details of provider: Postal: Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA
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  1. Rodrigo R. Soares, 2003. "Mortality Reductions, Educational Attainment, and Fertility Choice," Development and Comp Systems 0312006, EconWPA.
  2. James J. Heckman & Lance J. Lochner & Petra E. Todd, 2003. "Fifty Years of Mincer Earnings Regressions," NBER Working Papers 9732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  4. Edward C. Prescott, 2004. "Why do Americans Work so Much More than Europeans?," NBER Working Papers 10316, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  6. Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan & David Weil, 2006. "Mortality Change, the Uncertainty Effect, and Retirement," 2006 Meeting Papers 28, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  7. Xavier Mateos-Planas, 2001. "Schooling and Distortions in a Vintage Capital Model," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 4(1), pages 127-158, January.
  8. Jones, C.I., 2000. "Sources of U.S. Economic Growth in a World of Ideas," Papers 99-29, United Nations World Employment Programme-.
  9. Peter J. Klenow & Mark Bils, 2000. "Does Schooling Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1160-1183, December.
  10. Nancy L. Stokey & Sergio Rebelo, 1993. "Growth Effects of Flat-Rate Taxes," NBER Working Papers 4426, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Raouf BOUCEKKINE & David de la Croix & Omar LICANDRO, 2002. "Early mortality declines at the dawn of modern growth," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2002014, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  12. Psacharopoulos, George, 1994. "Returns to investment in education: A global update," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 22(9), pages 1325-1343, September.
  13. Trostel, Philip A, 1993. "The Effect of Taxation on Human Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 327-50, April.
  14. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Supply-Side Economics: An Analytical Review," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(2), pages 293-316, April.
  15. Kalemli-Ozcan, Sebnem & Ryder, Harl E. & Weil, David N., 2000. "Mortality decline, human capital investment, and economic growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 1-23, June.
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