nep-age New Economics Papers
on Economics of Ageing
Issue of 2024‒05‒13
seven papers chosen by
Claudia Villosio, LABORatorio R. Revelli

  1. Development of the Longitudinal Study of Health and Ageing in Kenya (LOSHAK). By Nagarajan, Niranjani; Burns, Shane; Rianga, Roselyter; Mwangi, Eunice; Sayed, Shaheen; Gichu, Muthoni; Langa, Kenneth; Ngugi, Anthony; Ehrlich, Joshua; Miguel, Edward
  2. The Case for Using Subsidies for Retirement Plans to Fix Social Security By Andrew G. Biggs; Alicia H. Munnell
  3. Are Older Workers Good for Business? By Laura D. Quinby; Gal Wettstein; James Giles
  4. The National Retirement Risk Index with Varying Claiming Ages By Yimeng Yin; Anqi Chen; Alicia H. Munnell
  5. Geographical and financial access to nursing homes: theoretical presentation of a measurement indicator By Carole Bonnet; Amélie Carrère; Roméo Fontaine; Agnès Gramain; Jérôme Wittwer
  6. How Much Do People Value Annuities and Their Added Features? By Karolos Arapakis; Gal Wettstein
  7. Could Social Security Child Benefits Help Grandparent Caregivers? By Siyan Liu; Laura D. Quinby

  1. By: Nagarajan, Niranjani; Burns, Shane; Rianga, Roselyter; Mwangi, Eunice; Sayed, Shaheen; Gichu, Muthoni; Langa, Kenneth; Ngugi, Anthony; Ehrlich, Joshua; Miguel, Edward
    Abstract: In Kenya, the number of adults aged ≥60 is expected to nearly quadruple by 2050, making it one of the most rapidly aging countries in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Accordingly, we designed the Longitudinal Study of Health and Ageing in Kenya (LOSHAK) to generate novel data to address the health and economic consequences of this demographic transition. Specifically, LOSHAK will investigate the social, economic, environmental, biological, and policy processes that shape late-life health and economic well-being in Kenya. Modeled on the U.S. Health and Retirement Study (HRS), LOSHAK joins a network of harmonized studies on aging in >45 countries worldwide; however, LOSHAK will be only the 2nd such study in SSA. The current feasibility and pilot phase of LOSHAK will validate measures and data collection procedures in a purposive sample of Kenyan adults aged ≥45 years. We have linguistically and culturally translated instruments while aiming to maintain harmonization with both existing HRS network studies and the ongoing Kenya Life Panel Survey. The current phase of LOSHAK is nested within the Kaloleni/Rabai Community Health and Demographic Surveillance System on the coast of Kenya. LOSHAK will advance population aging research in low- and middle-income countries through the study of (a) biomarkers and physiological measures; (b) the impacts of air pollution and climate vulnerability; (c) Alzheimers disease and related dementias, mental health, disability, caregiving, and psychosocial wellbeing; and (d) economic security, including the impact of social welfare. LOSHAK will inform future public health and economic policy to address challenges related to rapid aging in Kenya and throughout SSA. Accordingly, this paper aims to introduce and provide a description of LOSHAK and its aims and objectives, as well as to inform the scientific community of current study activities being used to build toward the full population-representative study.
    Keywords: Air pollution, Dementia, Health and Retirement Study, Healthy aging, Sub-Saharan Africa
    Date: 2024–01–01
  2. By: Andrew G. Biggs; Alicia H. Munnell
    Abstract: Tax preferences for saving in retirement plans are expensive – about $185 billion in 2020, according to Treasury estimates. Strikingly, they also seem a bad deal for taxpayers, primarily benefiting high earners while failing to significantly boost national saving. Thus, the case is strong for eliminating or reducing these preferences. The resulting increase in tax revenues could be reallocated to fixing Social Security’s finances.
    Date: 2024–01
  3. By: Laura D. Quinby; Gal Wettstein; James Giles
    Abstract: A common concern is that an aging workforce will reduce productivity and firm profitability, yet the evidence to date is mixed. This analysis examines the issue using a large sample from the most recent available Census data that links employees to their employers. The results show little evidence that older workers reduce productivity or profitability, although wide variation by industry exists. Thus, concern about an aging workforce hampering economic performance may be overblown.
    Date: 2023–11
  4. By: Yimeng Yin; Anqi Chen; Alicia H. Munnell
    Abstract: Households ages 62-75 have substantial earnings. The National Retirement Risk Index, which assumes all households claim Social Security – and retire – at 65, does not count earnings after 65. So, about half of all earnings for those 62-75 are excluded from the Index and could distort the results. Introducing more realistic claiming ages for low-, middle-, and high-income households solves two problems:Increases the earnings in the Index to two-thirds, with the rest going mainly to high earners where it has little impact. Produces a more sensible pattern of percentage “at risk†by income group. One thing that doesn’t change is the overall percentage of today’s working households at risk: that’s still about 50 percent.
    Date: 2023–11
  5. By: Carole Bonnet (INED - Institut national d'études démographiques); Amélie Carrère (IPP - Institut des politiques publiques); Roméo Fontaine (INED - Institut national d'études démographiques); Agnès Gramain (BETA - Bureau d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - AgroParisTech - UNISTRA - Université de Strasbourg - Université de Haute-Alsace (UHA) - Université de Haute-Alsace (UHA) Mulhouse - Colmar - UL - Université de Lorraine - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Jérôme Wittwer (BPH - Bordeaux population health - UB - Université de Bordeaux - Institut de Santé Publique, d'Épidémiologie et de Développement (ISPED) - INSERM - Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale)
    Abstract: Measuring the accessibility of care in nursing homes (Ehpads) is a key-element in the monitoring and evaluation of public policies for disabled elderly people. The relevance of such a measure is reinforced by the current context in many OECD countries, where the aging of the population is combined with the wish of public authorities to limit the creation of Ehpads new places. This note proposes a new family of measurement indicators, specifically designed to assess the consequences of French public policies, particularly in terms of territorial equity : to take into account of the potentially high out-of-pocket expenses and of the fact that regulation is largely decentralized at the departmental councils, these indicators aim to quantify the geographical and financial accessibility of Ehpad (AGFE), for a given individual, according to income level and location. The main indicator defined here can be adapted by modifying the target groups, or by integrating rules for prioritizing potential demand.
    Abstract: Mesurer l'accessibilité des prises en charge en établissement d'hébergement médicalisé (type Ehpad) est un élément important pour le pilotage et l'évaluation des politiques publiques de l'autonomie. L'intérêt d'une telle mesure est renforcé dans le contexte que connaissent de nombreux pays de l'OCDE, marqué par le vieillissement démographique mais la volonté des pouvoirs publics de restreindre le nombre de nouvelles places créées. Dans une perspective d'évaluation des conséquences de l'action publique, notamment en termes d'équité territoriale, la présente note propose une nouvelle famille d'indicateurs de mesure, adaptée aux politiques publiques françaises. Pour intégrer l'effet de restes-à-charge potentiellement élevés et de la décentralisation partielle de la régulation aux conseils départementaux, ils visent à quantifier l'accessibilité géographique et financière aux Ehpad (AGFE), pour un individu donné, en fonction de son niveau de revenu et de sa localisation. L'indicateur princeps défini ici peut être décliné en modifiant la population cible ou en intégrant des règles de priorisation des demandes potentielles.
    Keywords: Elderly, Nursing homes, Long-term care, Acces to care, Measure, Data, Personnes âgées, Perte d’autonomie, Ehpad, Accès aux soins, Indicateurs de mesure, Données
    Date: 2023–06
  6. By: Karolos Arapakis; Gal Wettstein
    Abstract: While annuities offer retirees a reliable stream of lifetime income, few people purchase them. To probe people’s perceptions of annuities, a new survey queried those near or in retirement with over $100, 000 in financial assets. About half of respondents say they would be willing to buy an annuity at prevailing market rates, while just 12 percent actually do so. The study tested whether low annuity take-up could be explained by a lack of liquidity or the inability to make bequests, but found no such evidence. In short, people may be deterred not by a lack of interest in annuities but by a lack of knowledge of the product and how to buy it.
    Date: 2024–01
  7. By: Siyan Liu; Laura D. Quinby
    Abstract: The brief’s key findings are:Grandparents raising grandchildren are often under financial stress but – without legal custody – tend to get little formal support. Importantly, Social Security child benefits are only available to those who are legal dependents of Social Security beneficiaries. In contrast, the IRS does not require legal custody to claim a child as a dependent for tax purposes.The analysis estimates the impact of aligning Social Security’s rules with the IRS criteria on grandparent caregivers. The results show that this change would substantially boost the incomes of half of all grandparent caregiver households.
    Date: 2023–10

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