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Bequest Motives, Social Security, and Economic Growth

Junsen Zhang and Junxi Zhang

Economic Inquiry, 2001, vol. 39, issue 3, 453-66

Abstract: This article conducts a systematic analysis of four bequest motives in a simple model of endogenous growth. It analyzes how bequest motives affect fertility, savings, growth, and the effects of pay-as-you-go Social Security. It is found that altruistic and exchange motives give equivalent outcomes if the discount factors are set the same. The outcome under the joy-of-giving motive may involve a higher bequest ratio, higher saving, and better growth rates than that under altruism. If bequests are accidental, the equilibrium values will depend on the probability of survival. Moreover, the results provide testable implications on bequest motives. Copyright 2001 by Oxford University Press.

Date: 2001
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