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Precautionary retirement and precautionary saving

Marco Magnani

Journal of Economics, 2020, vol. 129, issue 1, No 3, 49-77

Abstract: Abstract The paper analyzes the lifetime utility maximization problem of an agent who chooses her saving and timing of retirement in the presence of labor income risk in a simple setting where a pure redistributive pension scheme is in place. In this context, a precautionary motive for retirement, which pushes old workers to replace an uncertain labor income with certain pension payments, and to retire early is identified. The conditions for precautionary retirement and saving to arise are then characterized and interpreted in two settings. In the first setting, utility only depends on income, and a sufficiently low level of absolute prudence is necessary for precautionary retirement. A sufficiently high level is necessary however for precautionary saving, which can coexist with precautionary retirement only for intermediate values of absolute prudence. In the second setting, agent utility also depends on leisure, and three conditions allow the precautionary motive for retirement and saving to jointly operate: prudence, an index of absolute prudence sufficiently low and cross-prudence in leisure.

Keywords: Precautionary retirement; Precautionary saving; Retirement decision; Labor income risk (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D81 E20 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s00712-019-00668-6

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jeczfn:v:129:y:2020:i:1:d:10.1007_s00712-019-00668-6