nep-age New Economics Papers
on Economics of Ageing
Issue of 2020‒08‒24
28 papers chosen by
Claudia Villosio
LABORatorio R. Revelli

  1. Demographics and the natural interest rate in the euro area. By Marcin Bielecki; Michał Brzoza-Brzezina; Marcin Kolasa
  2. Old-Age Poverty: Single Women & Widows & A Lack of Retirement Security By Teresa Ghilarducci; Martha Susana Jaimes; Anthony Webb
  3. The Impact of a Social Security Proposal for "Catch-Up" Contributions By Wei Sun; Teresa Ghilarducci; Michael Papadopoulos; Anthony Webb
  4. Gender Pension Gaps in a Private Retirement Accounts System : A Dynamic Model of Household Labor Supply and Savings By Joubert,Clement Jean Edouard
  5. Expanding Social Security Benefits All Workers By Teresa Ghilarducci; Siavash Radpour; Anthony Webb
  6. Recession Increases Downward Mobility in Retirement: Middle Earners Hit From Both Sides By Retirement Equity Lab
  7. Social Security Reforms and the Changing Retirement Behavior in Germany By Axel H. Börsch-Supan; Johannes Rausch; Nicolas Goll
  8. Deep neural network for optimal retirement consumption in defined contribution pension system By Wen Chen; Nicolas Langren\'e
  9. Childhood Circumstances and Health Inequality in Old Age: Comparative Evidence from China and the United States By Chen, Xi; Yan, Binjian; Gill, Thomas M.
  10. Social Security Reduces Retirement Wealth Inequality By Teresa Ghilarducci; Siavash Radpour; Anthony Webb
  11. Does later retirement change your healthcare consumption ? Evidence from France By Elsa Perdrix
  12. China’s Economic Demography Transition Strategy: A Population Weighted Approach to the Economy and Policy By Johnston, Lauren A.
  13. Older Workers Will Be More Vulnerable in the Next Recession By Retirement Equity Lab
  14. 10+ Years of No Wage Growth: The Role of Alternative Jobs and Gig Work By Retirement Equity Lab
  15. Grandparenting and well-being of the elderly in China By Wang, Hao; Fidrmuc, Jan; Luo, Qi
  16. Inequality of Opportunity in Bodyweight among Middle-Aged and Older Chinese: A Distributional Approach By Nie, Peng; Ding, Lanlin; Jones, Andrew M.
  17. Older Workers Know They Face An Unfriendly Labor Market By Retirement Equity Lab
  18. Disparities & Erosion in New York’s Workplace Retirement Coverage By Teresa Ghilarducci; Michael Papadopoulos
  19. Solidarity between generations in extended families. Direction, size and intensity By Gerlinde Verbist; Ron Diris; Frank Vandenbroucke
  20. Old-age pensions and female labour supply in India By Vidhya Unnikrishnan; Kunal Sen
  21. 20+ Years of Older Workers’ Declining Bargaining Power By Retirement Equity Lab
  22. Assessing the Age Specificity of Infection Fatality Rates for COVID-19: Meta-Analysis & Public Policy Implications By Andrew T. Levin; Kensington B. Cochran; Seamus P. Walsh
  23. Linking Changes in Inequality in Life Expectancy and Mortality: Evidence from Denmark and the United States By Gordon B. Dahl; Claus Thustrup Kreiner; Torben Helen Nielsen; Benjamin Ly Serena
  24. Global Mortality Benefits of COVID-19 Action By Yoo, Sunbin; Managi, Shusuke
  25. Extreme Retirement Inequality Persists, Even Among Those With Similar Earnings By Teresa Ghilarducci; Siavash Radpour; Owen Davis; Anthony Webb
  26. El sistema de pensiones en Costa Rica: institucionalidad, gasto público y sostenibilidad financiera By Pacheco, José Francisco; Elizondo, Hazel; Pacheco, Juan Carlos
  27. Recessions and Occupational Match Quality: The Role of Age, Gender, and Education By John T. Addison; Liwen Chen; Orgul D. Ozturk
  28. Promoting Financial Literacy among the Elderly: Consequences on Confidence By Alessandro Bucciol; Simone Quercia; Alessia Sconti

  1. By: Marcin Bielecki (Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw); Michał Brzoza-Brzezina (SGH Warsaw School of Economics and Narodowy Bank Polski); Marcin Kolasa (SGH Warsaw School of Economics and Narodowy Bank Polski)
    Abstract: We investigate the impact of demographics on the natural rate of interest (NRI) in the euro area, with a particular focus on the role played by economic openness, migrations and pension system design. To this end, we construct a life-cycle model and calibrate it to match the life-cycle profiles from HFCS data. We show that population aging contributes significantly to the decline in the NRI, explaining about two-thirds of its secular decline between 1985 and 2030. Openness to international capital flows has not been important in driving the EA real interest rate so far, but will become a significant factor preventing its further decline in the coming decades, when aging in Europe accelerates relative to the rest of the world. Of two possible pension reforms, only an increase in the retirement age can revert the downward trend on the equilibrium interest rate while a fall in the replacement rate would make its fall even deeper. The demographic pressure on the Eurozone NRI can be alleviated by increased immigration, but only to a small extent and with a substantial lag.
    Keywords: population aging, natural interest rate, life-cycle models, pension systems, migrations
    JEL: E31 E52 J11
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Teresa Ghilarducci; Martha Susana Jaimes; Anthony Webb (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: Rates of elder poverty among widows and single women are higher than among couples and men. Poverty among single women reflects low lifetime earnings and spotty pension coverage, whereas poverty among widows results from the exhaustion of financial resources. In both cases, women will benefit from the creation of Guaranteed Retirement Accounts (GRAs), a source of independent retirement income lasting a lifetime.
    Keywords: Retirement, Women, Widows, Poverty, Older workers, Earnings, Pensions
    JEL: J26 J16 I30 H55 J32 E21 D63
    Date: 2018–12
  3. By: Wei Sun; Teresa Ghilarducci; Michael Papadopoulos; Anthony Webb (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: Social Security “Catch-Up contributions would allow workers to contribute an additional 3.1 percent of salary, starting at age 50, in return for enhanced benefits. The program builds on the progressivity of the existing Social Security benefit formula. We construct an intertemporal optimization model, incorporating the interaction between retired worker, spousal, and survivor benefits, and show that for plausible rates of return on financial assets, coefficients of risk aversion, and mortality assumptions, even high lifetime earners would benefit from participation. Thus, the analysis speaks to the debate as to whether the Social Security actuarial shortfall should be bridged by benefit cuts or tax increases. We argue that in in contrast to proposals to allow workers to purchase additional Social Security benefits with 401k plan balances, the program would be unlikely to suffer from adverse selection. The program would reduce the Social Security actuarial shortfall in the short run and be approximately actuarially neutral over the long run. The program would not solve the retirement saving crisis, but would modestly reduce poverty and near poverty. Social Security “Catch-Up” contributions would allow American workers to increase their Social Security benefits starting age 50. Simulations of the program show that households at all income levels would benefit from a 3.1 percent extra contribution to Social Security. Under several simulated conditions, people would have to contribute much more to 401(k), IRAs, with or without annuitization to get the equivalent benefit. Advance-funded employer plans are still needed to get adequate replacement rates. The “Catch Up” proposal won an AARP innovation grant, could be implemented today, making all older workers better off and without making Social Security funding worse. We are encouraged by widespread popular support for Social Security.
    Keywords: Social Security, 401k, retirement
    JEL: J26 H55 J38
    Date: 2019–05
  4. By: Joubert,Clement Jean Edouard
    Abstract: This paper develops and estimates a dynamic model of individuals'and couples'labor supply, savings, and retirement decisions to analyze how the design of a privatized pension system affects gender pension gaps. Chile has one of the longest running nationwide private retirements accounts systems in the world, operating since 1980. It has served as a model for many countries and was reformed in 2008 to alleviate old- age poverty and reduce gender pension gaps. The paper estimates the dynamic model using pre-reform data and compares the model's short-term predictions with available evidence on the reform's causal impacts. The analysis finds that household structure is an important determinant of the behavioral and distributional impacts of the reform. The paper evaluates how actual and counterfactual changes in the pension system design affect men's and women's economic decisions, pension receipts, and program costs over a longer time horizon. Three design features significantly reduce gender pension gaps: expanding minimum pension benefit eligibility, providing a per-child pension bonus, and increasing women's retirement age to be equal to men's.
    Keywords: Pensions&Retirement Systems,Gender and Development,Labor Markets,Health Care Services Industry
    Date: 2020–07–16
  5. By: Teresa Ghilarducci; Siavash Radpour; Anthony Webb (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: Social Security provides insurance against the risk of outliving one’s wealth that is valuable to low and high earners alike. Both low and high earners would benefit from Social Security expansion. We propose expanding Social Security by allowing workers to buy extra Social Security benefits. We propose defaulting workers into revenue neutral “Catch-Up” contributions. Starting at age 50, workers would contribute an additional 3.1% of salary. The typical worker would receive additional benefits of $226 a month at retirement.
    Keywords: Social Security, Retirement, Catch-Up, Benefits, Savings, Wealth, Older Workers
    JEL: J26 H55 J32 E21 D63
    Date: 2020–03
  6. By: Retirement Equity Lab (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: An examination of the status of older workers in the second quarter of 2020 reveals two highlights: increased downward mobility at all earnings levels and middle earners being hit twice, sustaining both job loss and market loss. Policy recommendations include Congress discouraging early retirement withdrawals and increasing and extending unemployment benefits for older workers. The recession exposes the need for comprehensive reform: expanding Social Security and creating a public option retirement plan in the form of Guaranteed Retirement Accounts.
    Keywords: older workers, recession, COVID-19, coronavirus, downward mobility, poverty, unemployment, wages
    JEL: E24 J30 J38 J60 J88 J58
    Date: 2020–05
  7. By: Axel H. Börsch-Supan; Johannes Rausch; Nicolas Goll
    Abstract: As much like other industrialized countries, in recent decades the employment rate in Germany for those aged 55 to 69 had been declining first to considerably rise again afterwards. This paper investigates the role of structural policy changes, in particular reforms of the pension system, since 1980 in explaining this trend reversal. We summarize the institutional changes and pension reforms that may account for the trend reversal, and calculate an “implicit tax on working longer”. We find that for both men and women the increase in the employment rate coincides with a reduction in the early retirement incentive. The reduction of incentives mainly stems from the introduction of actuarial deductions for early retirement and from the abolishment of specific early retirement pathways.
    JEL: H55 J26
    Date: 2020–07
  8. By: Wen Chen; Nicolas Langren\'e
    Abstract: In this paper, we develop a deep neural network approach to solve a lifetime expected mortality-weighted utility-based model for optimal consumption in the decumulation phase of a defined contribution pension system. We formulate this problem as a multi-period finite-horizon stochastic control problem and train a deep neural network policy representing consumption decisions. The optimal consumption policy is determined by personal information about the retiree such as age, wealth, risk aversion and bequest motive, as well as a series of economic and financial variables including inflation rates and asset returns jointly simulated from a proposed seven-factor economic scenario generator calibrated from market data. We use the Australian pension system as an example, with consideration of the government-funded means-tested Age Pension and other practical aspects such as fund management fees. The key findings from our numerical tests are as follows. First, our deep neural network optimal consumption policy, which adapts to changes in market conditions, outperforms deterministic drawdown rules proposed in the literature. Moreover, the out-of-sample outperformance ratios increase as the number of training iterations increases, eventually reaching outperformance on all testing scenarios after less than 10 minutes of training. Second, a sensitivity analysis is performed to reveal how risk aversion and bequest motives change the consumption over a retiree's lifetime under this utility framework. Third, we provide the optimal consumption rate with different starting wealth balances. We observe that optimal consumption rates are not proportional to initial wealth due to the Age Pension payment. Forth, with the same initial wealth balance and utility parameter settings, the optimal consumption level is different between males and females due to gender differences in mortality.
    Date: 2020–07
  9. By: Chen, Xi; Yan, Binjian; Gill, Thomas M.
    Abstract: This paper estimates the extent to which childhood circumstances contribute to health inequality in old age and evaluates the importance of major domains of childhood circumstances to health inequalities in the USA and China. We link two waves of the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS) in 2013 and 2015 with the newly released 2014 Life History Survey (LHS), and two waves of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) in 2014 and 2016 with the newly released 2015 Life History Mail Survey (LHMS) in the USA, to quantify health inequality due to childhood circumstances for which they have little control. Using the Shapley value decomposition approach, we show that childhood circumstances may explain 7-16 percent and 14-30 percent of health inequality in old age in China and the USA, respectively. Specifically, the contribution of childhood circumstances to health inequality is larger in the USA than in China for self-rated health, mental health, and physical health. Examining domains of childhood circumstance, regional and rural/urban status contribute more to health inequality in China, while family socioeconomic status (SES) contributes more to health inequality in the USA. Our findings support the value of a life course approach in identifying the key determinants of health in old age. Distinguishing sources of health inequality and rectifying inequality due to early childhood circumstances should be the basis of policy promoting health equity.
    Keywords: Life course approach,Inequality of opportunity,Self-rated health,Mental health,Frailty,Childhood circumstances
    JEL: I14 J13 J14 O57
    Date: 2020
  10. By: Teresa Ghilarducci; Siavash Radpour; Anthony Webb (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: Social Security benefits are progressive and offset the unequal distribution of retirement wealth generated by a broken employer-based retirement system. Though Social Security benefits keep retirees out of poverty, American workers still face a retirement income crisis. Policymakers need to strengthen and expand Social Security and mandate employer-sponsored retirement plans to ensure universal coverage and adequate retirement income.
    Keywords: Social Security, Retirement, Wealth, Income, Older Workers
    JEL: J26 H55 J32 E21 D63
    Date: 2020–01
  11. By: Elsa Perdrix (PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, PSE - Paris School of Economics, IPP - Institut des politiques publiques)
    Abstract: This paper examines the causal impact of later retirement on doctor visits among the French elderly. This question is of interest since spillover effects may arise if later retirement increases healthcare expenditure. I exploit the 1993 French pension reform in a two-stage least square to deal with the endogeneity of retirement. This reform leads to a progressive increase in claiming age, cohort by cohort from 1934 to 1943. I use a two-part model to disentangle between extensive and intensive margin. I use the administrative data HYGIE to observe both healthcare consumption between 2005 and 2015 and past careers. I find that an increase in retirement by four months decreases significantly the probability to have at least one doctor visit per year by 0.815 percentage point and decreases the number of doctor visits by 1.14% between ages 67 and 75. This effect is driven by the consumption of generalist doctor visits, and tends to be stronger for the first ages of consumption observed.
    Keywords: Pension reform,Health,Healthcare consumption
    Date: 2020–07
  12. By: Johnston, Lauren A.
    Abstract: The first pandemic of the 21st century has brought Pyrrhic attention to one of the era’s greatest megatrends – population ageing. Today rich countries are disproportionately affected but increasingly the world’s elderly are residents of developing countries. In rich and poor countries alike, a policy approach that explicitly accounts for the interdependence of economic and demographic change – an economic demography transition approach - has never been more pressing. Thanks partly to the tragedy of history’s greatest Malthusian stagnation, that of mid-20th century China, Chinese policymakers implemented draconian population control measures alongside dramatic economic reforms from around 1980. This paper elaborates China’s consequential and ongoing economic demography transition strategy within the economic and development policy discourse. Amid epochal demographic, public health, and geo-economic change, this economic demography perspective is timely, unique and useful in extrapolation across all economies.
    Keywords: Population ageing,Economic Demography,Demographic Transition,China
    JEL: J11 J18 N35 O20
    Date: 2020
  13. By: Retirement Equity Lab (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: An examination of the status of older workers in the third quarter of 2019 reveals two highlights: older workers have higher levels of financial fragility than in 2006, before the Great Recession, and millions of workers who are now nearing retirement lost jobs in the 2008-09 recession, saw their wages fall, and now face increased risk of repeated job loss. Policy recommendations include boosting financial security for older people by strengthening Social Security, creating Guaranteed Retirement Accounts, bolstering unemployment insurance, and creating a federal Older Workers Bureau to protect this growing population in the labor market.
    Keywords: older workers, financial fragility, recession, financial security, unemployment, wages, bargaining power
    JEL: E24 J30 J38 J60 J88 J58
    Date: 2019–11
  14. By: Retirement Equity Lab (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: An examination of the status of older workers in the first quarter of 2019 reveals two key trends: older worker wage growth is minimal and lags behind prime-age wage growth, and older workers increasingly resort to precarious alternative work, eroding their bargaining power and impacting other older workers’ wages. To address these troubling trends, Congress and the President should create an Older Workers’ Bureau, Guaranteed Retirement Accounts, and expanded Social Security to protect older workers.
    Keywords: older workers, wage growth, alternative work, gig work, wages, unemployment
    JEL: E24 J30 J38 J60 J88 J58
    Date: 2019–05
  15. By: Wang, Hao; Fidrmuc, Jan; Luo, Qi
    Abstract: Grandparenting duties can affect the well-being of the elderly both positively and negatively. This paper disentangles the interactions between grandparenting, quality of life, and life satisfaction in China. Using a panel dataset of 3,205 respondents in three waves of the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS) in 2011, 2013, and 2015, we find that grandparents who look after grandchildren are less at risk of depression, receive more financial and in-kind transfers from their children, and report greater life satisfaction than grandparents who do not look after grandchildren. These benefits vary across gender and rural-urban status, however. The positive effect of grandparenting is driven mainly by the direct effect with negligible mediating effect attributable to better quality of life.
    JEL: D13 O18
    Date: 2020–08–09
  16. By: Nie, Peng (Xi’an Jiaotong University); Ding, Lanlin (Xi’an Jiaotong University); Jones, Andrew M. (University of York)
    Abstract: Using the 2011 and 2015 waves of the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS) linked with the 2014 CHARLS Life History Survey, we provide a comprehensive analysis on inequality of opportunity (IOp) in both body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) among middle-aged and older Chinese. We find that IOp ranges from 65.5% to 74.6% for BMI (from 82.1% to 95.5% for WC). Decomposition results show that spatial circumstances such as urban/rural residence and province of residence are dominant. Health status and nutrition conditions in childhood are the second largest contributor. Distributional decompositions further reveal that inequality in bodyweight is not simply a matter of demographic (age and gender) inequalities; our set of spatial and health and nutrition conditions in childhood become much more relevant towards the right tails of the bodyweight distribution, where the clinical risk is focused.
    Keywords: inequality of opportunity, body mass index, waist circumference, CHARLS, Shapley-Shorrocks decomposition, unconditional quantile regressions
    JEL: D63 I12 I14
    Date: 2020–06
  17. By: Retirement Equity Lab (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: An examination of the status of older workers in the first quarter of 2020 reveals two highlights: older workers are more likely than younger workers to think they can’t find a job comparable to their current one, a well-founded fear that persists at every earnings level and reflects the reality of an unfriendly labor market, and are less likely to quit their jobs without ability to find a better one, further eroding their bargaining power. Policy recommendations include increasing older workers’ opportunities by increasing their bargaining power in the workplace, establishing a federal Older Workers Bureau, expanding Social Security, and creating universal Guaranteed Retirement Accounts & an emergency savings program.
    Keywords: older workers, employment, ageism, labor market, unemployment, wages, bargaining power
    JEL: E24 J30 J38 J60 J88 J58
    Date: 2020–02
  18. By: Teresa Ghilarducci; Michael Papadopoulos (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: An examination of retirement readiness in New York shows that there is a lack of adequate retirement savings for all: inadequate account balances, inadequate retirement income, and downward mobility in retirement. Coverage continues to erode for New Yorkers across the board, but this report also highlights long-standing disparities in coverage based on race, age, education, and income.
    Keywords: retirement, retirement coverage, disparities, race, age, income, retirement savings
    JEL: J26 J32 J15
    Date: 2018–12
  19. By: Gerlinde Verbist; Ron Diris; Frank Vandenbroucke
    Abstract: We analyse intergenerational solidarity within multigenerational (MG) households, and assess how the formation of these households is related to poverty across European countries. Using data from EU-SILC 2013, we first assess to what extent financial gains of the formation of the MG households are pro-child, pro-elderly or to the benefit of all. Next, we determine how the prevalence of MG households relates to poverty risks, and especially how (the sharing of) elderly income impacts child poverty. We analyse (1) the direct relationship between living in a MG household and child poverty using a logistic regression and (2) the contribution of elderly income to lowering child poverty risks, under different scenarios of costsharing and resource-sharing using a pre-post analysis. The results indicate that the formation of MG households operates mainly as solidarity from older to younger generations. Although not designed for this purpose, pensions thereby also serve as a function to alleviate child poverty in these countries where MG households are most prevalent.
    Date: 2018–10
  20. By: Vidhya Unnikrishnan; Kunal Sen
    Abstract: Whether cash transfers have unintended behavioural effects on the recipient household's labour supply is of considerable policy interest. We examine the 'intent to treat effect' of the Indira Gandhi National Old-Age Pension Scheme on prime-age women's labour supply decisions in India, where female labour force participation continues to decline over time. We find that having a pension-eligible individual in the household increases the probability of working by 3.2 percentage points for women aged 20-50, with the effect stronger for urban women.
    Keywords: Childcare, Employment, Income effect, Labour supply, Pension, Women
    Date: 2020
  21. By: Retirement Equity Lab (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: An examination of the status of older workers in the second quarter of 2019 reveals two highlights: over the past three decades, older workers’ wages declined and lagged behind younger workers’ wages, and older workers’ declining wages are evidence of weakened bargaining power. Policy recommendations include protecting workers’ rights and restoring retirement income to provide an alternative to low-quality jobs.
    Keywords: older workers, wage growth, unemployment, wages, bargaining power, workers’ rights
    JEL: E24 J30 J38 J60 J88 J58
    Date: 2019–08
  22. By: Andrew T. Levin; Kensington B. Cochran; Seamus P. Walsh
    Abstract: This paper assesses the age specificity of the infection fatality rate (IFR) for COVID-19. Our benchmark meta-regression synthesizes the age-specific IFRs from four recent large-scale seroprevalence studies conducted in Belgium, Geneva, Spain, and Sweden. The estimated IFR is close to zero for children and younger adults but rises exponentially with age, reaching about 0.3 percent for ages 50-59, 1 percent for ages 60-69, 4 percent for ages 70-79, and 24 percent for ages 80 and above. We compare those predictions to the age-specific IFRs computed using recent seroprevalence studies of six U.S. geographical areas, three small-scale studies, and three countries (Iceland, New Zealand, and Republic of Korea) that have engaged in comprehensive tracking and tracing of COVID-19 infections. We also review more than 30 other seroprevalence studies whose design was not well-suited for estimating age-specific IFRs. Our findings indicate that COVID-19 is not just dangerous for the elderly and infirm but also for healthy middle-aged adults, for whom the fatality rate is roughly 50 times greater than the risk of dying in an automobile accident. Consequently, the overall IFR for a given location is intrinsically linked to the age-specific pattern of infections. In a scenario where the U.S. infection rate reaches nearly 30 percent, our analysis indicates that protecting vulnerable age groups could prevent over 200,000 deaths.
    JEL: H12 H51 I10 I12
    Date: 2020–07
  23. By: Gordon B. Dahl; Claus Thustrup Kreiner; Torben Helen Nielsen; Benjamin Ly Serena
    Abstract: We decompose changing gaps in life expectancy between rich and poor into differential changes in age-specific mortality rates and differences in “survivability”. Declining age-specific mortality rates increases life expectancy, but the gain is small if the likelihood of living to this age is small (ex ante survivability) or if the expected remaining lifetime is short (ex post survivability). Lower survivability of the poor explains half of the recent rise in life expectancy inequality in the US and the entire rise in Denmark. Cardiovascular mortality declines favored the poor, but differences in lifestyle-related survivability led inequality to rise.
    Keywords: life expectancy inequality, mortality inequality
    JEL: I14
    Date: 2020
  24. By: Yoo, Sunbin; Managi, Shusuke
    Abstract: The rapid spread of COVID-19 motivated countries worldwide to mitigate mortality through actions including social distancing, home quarantine, school closures, and case isolation. We estimate the global mortality benefits of these actions. We use county-level data on COVID-19 from January 2020, project the number of mortalities until September 2020, and calculate the global mortality benefits using the age- and country-specific value of a statistical life (VSL). Implementing all four types of actions above would save approximately 40.76 trillion USD globally, with social distancing accounting for 55% of the benefits. The monetary benefit would be the largest in the US, Japan and China. Our findings indicate that global actions during COVID-19 have substantial economic benefits and must be implemented in response to COVID-19.
    Keywords: COVID-19; coronavirus; global mortality benefit; value of a statistical life; epidemic diseases
    JEL: D6 H84 I10 I12 I18
    Date: 2020–06
  25. By: Teresa Ghilarducci; Siavash Radpour; Owen Davis; Anthony Webb (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: A first-of-its-kind analysis reveals sharp and persistent inequalities in retirement wealth. Using survey data matched with tax records, this study finds striking levels of retirement inequality within lifetime earnings groups as well as growing disparities between earnings quintiles. Retirement inequality mainly reflects the plight of low to moderate earners, rather than the outsize accumulations of the wealthy few. Measures to address retirement inequality should focus on those most disadvantaged by the failings of the U.S. retirement system.
    Keywords: Retirement, Inequality, Wealth, Disparities, Retirement savings
    JEL: J26 J32 E21 D63
    Date: 2019–04
  26. By: Pacheco, José Francisco; Elizondo, Hazel; Pacheco, Juan Carlos
    Abstract: Este documento presenta la institucionalidad, el gasto público y la sostenibilidad financiera del sistema de pensiones en Costa Rica. En 1886, comenzó la larga tradición en pensiones de Costa Rica que alcanza un momento medular en la década de los cuarenta con la operación del seguro social, que posteriormente sería complementado con la creación del régimen no contributivo en 1975 y la promulgación de la Ley de Protección al Trabajador en 2000. La constitución del sistema con cuatro pilares se complejiza por la alta fragmentación del Pilar I donde coexisten 4 regímenes con niveles de madurez, reglas de operación y desempeño financiero históricamente muy disímiles. Distintas reformas al régimen de pensiones han estado en el debate técnico y en la agenda política por más de 10 años, con diferentes objetivos de interés y temporalidad. En algunos casos, como el IVM, el cambio en el esquema de cotización tuvo como objetivo mejorar su sostenibilidad financiera. En el Poder Judicial, la reforma contempló tanto objetivos de sostenibilidad como de equidad inter-regímenes. En el caso del régimen de Hacienda, los objetivos de reforma se orientaron a la equidad, el manejo ético de los recursos públicos y su contribución para paliar la crisis fiscal. Queda pendiente la reforma al IVM y observar los resultados de la reforma al Poder Judicial, la promesa de las pensiones complementarias de elevar la tasa de reemplazo conjunta y el fortalecimiento del régimen no contributivo como un programa de protección social más amplio.
    Date: 2020–08–13
  27. By: John T. Addison; Liwen Chen; Orgul D. Ozturk
    Abstract: Although the adverse labor market effects of economic recessions have been well documented, a notable omission in the literature is how recessions impact workers’ job match quality. This paper considers the short and longer-term losses in productivity associated with the job changing brought in train by the two most recent recessions. Changes in match quality are the mechanism, with dislocated workers being reemployed in jobs for which they are more mismatched. Using monthly data from the 1979 and 1997 cohorts of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth and the Current Population Survey (CPS), we document direct changes in occupational match quality and the associated changes in wages. We first investigate how workers’ match qualities change over the lifecycle and report that the total amount of mismatch averaged over all workers of the younger cohort actually decreased through time. For the older cohort, we then explore the role of age, education, gender, and occupational task groups. Economic recessions are shown to disproportionately harm the match quality of mid-aged workers versus that of young workers; to have more serious consequences for the match quality of men than women, especially highly educated men; and lead to occupational polarization, thereby amplifying the skill mismatch of mid-aged workers.
    Keywords: recessions, match quality, mismatch, wage loss, mid-career effects, mancessions, downskilling
    JEL: E24 J24 J63
    Date: 2020
  28. By: Alessandro Bucciol (Department of Economics (University of Verona)); Simone Quercia (Department of Economics (University of Verona)); Alessia Sconti (Department of Economics (University of Verona))
    Abstract: Financial literacy is a crucial skill for personal wealth management and economic well-being. Hence, it is important to evaluate the impact of interventions aimed at increasing financial literacy in the most vulnerable groups of the society. We conduct an impact evaluation of an intervention consisting in a two-hour lecture by university professors targeting the elderly population. We find that the intervention does not have a significant effect on literacy but has a significant effect on confidence. Our results highlight that short programs meant to increase financial literacy may have a severe drawback in favoring an increased confidence in one's own competence, not supported by an increased competence.
    Keywords: Financial literacy, Confidence, Overconfidence
    JEL: D91
    Date: 2020–07

This nep-age issue is ©2020 by Claudia Villosio. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.