"/> Welfare Reform on the Web (January 2010): Pensions - overseas
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Welfare Reform on the Web (January 2010): Pensions - overseas

The disappearing defined benefit pension and its potential impact on retirement incomes of baby boomers

B.A. Butrica and others

Social Security Bulletin, vol. 69, 2009, p. 1-27

In recent years the United States has seen a significant shift away from defined benefit pension plans to defined contribution plans. The shift may accelerate rapidly as more large companies freeze their defined benefit plans and replace them with new or enhanced defined contribution plans. This article uses a microsimulation model to estimate how freezing all remaining private sector and one-third of all public sector defined benefit plans over the next five years would affect the retirement income of baby boomers. On balance, there would be more losers than winners and family incomes would decline. The decline in family income would be much larger for last wave boomers born from 1961 to 1965 than for first-wave boomers born from 1946-1950, because last-wave boomers are more likely to have their defined benefit pensions frozen with relatively little job tenure.

An empirical study of the effects of social security reforms on benefit claiming behaviour and receipt using public-use administrative microdata

H. Benitez-Silva and N. Yin

Social Security Bulletin, vol. 69, 2009, p. 77-95

This article uses microdata from the OASDI public-use microdata extract of 2004 to analyse the effects on retirement benefit claiming behaviour and level of benefit receipt of a number of recent changes to the US Social Security system. These changes include increasing the full retirement age (FRA), increasing the delayed retirement credit, and abolishing the earnings test for persons above the FRA. The analysis shows evidence of substantial effects of the removal of the earnings test and the increase in the FRA, but very small effects as a result of the increases in the delayed retirement credit.

Implications of an increasing old-age dependency ratio: The UK and Latvian experiences compared

B. Ingham, A. Chirijevskis, and F. Carmichael

Pensions: An International Journal, vol. 14, 2009, p. 221-230

This article looks at the implications of the projected increase in people of pensionable age in Europe, and examines in detail the situation and policy responses in the UK and Latvia.

Pension Reform in Southeastern Europe

R. Holzman, L. MacKellar and J. Repansek (eds)

World Bank, 2009

This book of conference proceedings includes papers about the vision and progress of pension reform in Hungary, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Denmark, Macedonia, Serbia and Romania, with a comparative paper on Latin America and chapters exploring the approach and progress in other parts of Europe. Includes useful statistics, tables, and charts.

Pension reforms, working patterns and gender pension gaps in Europe

P. Frericks, T. Knijn and R. Maier

Gender, Work and Organization, vol. 16, 2009, p. 710-730

The pension systems of many European countries are pay-as-you-go financed. Ongoing reforms are partly transforming these systems into capital-funded schemes, and are transferring responsibility for pension provision from the state to the individual. The trend of partly replacing state pensions with private and occupational schemes tends to disadvantage women, who are often not continuously employed due to caring responsibilities. The authors propose a Utopian solution to this problem in the shape of a universal basic state pension funded out of general taxation and supplemented by care credits as well as contributions to private and occupational schemes.

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