Using International Micro Data to Learn about Individuals' Responses to Changes in Social Insurance

by Michael D. Hurd, Pierre-Carl Michaud, Susann Rohwedder

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In this paper the authors examine the scope of cross-country variation in institutions related to social insurance. Building on the variation they find they assess the value of new micro data that is comparable across countries to help identify key parameters of individual behavior. They present multiple aspects of labor force participation, including disability benefit receipt, as well as wealth accumulation and relate the resulting patterns to variation in institutions across countries. Finally, they study the relationship between wealth accumulation and the generosity of public pensions in more detail. The estimates imply that Social Security benefits displace private saving.

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