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The German statutory pension scheme: Balance sheet, cross-sectional internal rates of return and implicit tax rates

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  • Metzger, Christoph

Abstract

We present a framework for accounting of the German statutory pension scheme and estimate a balance sheet for the years 2005 until 2012. Extending and applying the methodology proposed by Settergren and Mikula (2005), we estimate the cross-sectional internal rates of return of the German pension scheme over this period. We are able to show that the cross-sectional internal rate of return is mainly financed by increasing contributions and by changing the liabilities not backed by assets. Additionally, our results reveal that from an expenditure perspective, the major part of the internal rate of return is resulting from changing longevity rather than indexation of pension entitlements. Finally, we prove that from a cross-sectional perspective the implicit tax of a pension scheme can mainly be interpreted as an “implicit wealth tax” on pension wealth and subsequently present empirical estimates for these cross-sectional implicit tax rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Metzger, Christoph, 2016. "The German statutory pension scheme: Balance sheet, cross-sectional internal rates of return and implicit tax rates," FZG Discussion Papers 63, University of Freiburg, Research Center for Generational Contracts (FZG).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:fzgdps:63
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    1. Robert Fenge & Silke Übelmesser & Martin Werding, 2002. "Second-best Properties of Implicit Social Security Taxes: Theory and Empirical Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 743, CESifo Group Munich.
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    Cited by:

    1. Carlos Vidal-Meliá & Manuel Ventura-Marco & Juan Manuel Pérez-Salamero González, 2018. "Actuarial accounting for a notional defined contribution scheme combining retirement and longterm care benefits," Documentos de Trabajo del ICAE 2018-16, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Instituto Complutense de Análisis Económico.
    2. Christian Bührer & Steffen Fetzer & Christian Hagist, 2017. "Das Hamburger Beihilfemodell - Ein Vergleich der internen Renditen von GKV und PKV," WHU Working Paper Series - Economics Group 17-06, WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    accounting of pension schemes; balance sheet; internal rate of return; implicit tax; fiscal sustainability;

    JEL classification:

    • E01 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General - - - Measurement and Data on National Income and Product Accounts and Wealth; Environmental Accounts
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • H83 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - Public Administration
    • H87 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - International Fiscal Issues; International Public Goods

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