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Population aging in Canada: What the lifecycle deficit profiles are telling us about living standards?

Marcel Mérette () and Julien Navaux ()
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Marcel Mérette: Department of Economics, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Julien Navaux: Department of Economics, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON

No 1810E, Working Papers from University of Ottawa, Department of Economics

Abstract: In this paper, we develop a new longitudinal data set for Canada based on the National Transfer Account (NTA) methodology. NTA gives a complete picture of economic flows by age and measures the way in which individuals produce, consume, save and share resources at each age on a retrospective basis. This paper introduces for the first time individual age consumption and labour income profiles in Canada for the period between 1998 and 2013. The longitudinal dimension of the study sheds light on how the gap between consumption and labour income has been changing over that period. We also use the age profiles of consumption and labour income to construct an alternative indicator to the demographic dependency ratio, called the NTA Economic Support Ratio. This allows us to project the pressure of aging on this new ratio and hence to identify under which conditions private consumption in Canada can be funded over the next few years. The analysis raises concerns about the sustainability of living standards in an aging context.

Pages: 26 pages
Date: 2018
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