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On a Generalization of the World Bank Model of Retirement Savings: A Taxonomy of Systems with Two Cross-Subsidized Tiers


Benjamin Avanzi


University of Montreal - Department of Mathematics and Statistics; University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Australian School of Business - School of Risk and Actuarial Studies

Sachi Purcal


Macquarie University - Department of Actuarial Studies; Financial Research Network (FIRN)

February 10, 2012

UNSW Australian School of Business Research Paper No. 2009ACTL09

Abstract:     
We develop a generalization of the World Bank (1994) model of forced saving for retirement. This broader model consists of two tiers of second pillar savings --- mandated and non-mandated (voluntary). Furthermore, the government can set two types of guarantees on the first (mandated) tier --- investment returns and annuity prices --- leading to possible cross-subsidization between the tiers. This has the potential to induce social redistribution, foster a liquid private market for life annuities, as well as obviate some of the investment risk and annuity price risk that
retirees face.

We formulate a quantitative model of financial flows within such a system, which explains the mechanism by which cross-subsidization occurs. Based on this analysis, a taxonomy of two-tiered retirement systems is presented, that is based on the choices that the government makes.

Our modelling is inspired by the Swiss second pillar model, which serves as a motivation and illustration. The Swiss system features unique properties and remarkable outcomes. These include both high levels of savings and (unforced) annuitization, as well as a non-trivial level of internal cross-subsidies between the two tiers of the system. The analysis allows us to shed some light on some of the issues the Swiss system is currently facing.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 16

Keywords: retirement savings, pensions, regulation, Switzerland, annuitization

JEL Classification: J26, D81, D91, E21, G23, H55

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Date posted: September 3, 2009 ; Last revised: February 10, 2012

Suggested Citation

Avanzi, Benjamin and Purcal, Sachi, On a Generalization of the World Bank Model of Retirement Savings: A Taxonomy of Systems with Two Cross-Subsidized Tiers (February 10, 2012). UNSW Australian School of Business Research Paper No. 2009ACTL09. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1466386 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1466386

Contact Information

Benjamin Avanzi (Contact Author)
University of Montreal - Department of Mathematics and Statistics ( email )
Montreal, Quebec H3C 3J7
Canada
+1 514 343 6695 (Phone)
University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Australian School of Business - School of Risk and Actuarial Studies ( email )
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia
Sachi Purcal
Macquarie University - Department of Actuarial Studies ( email )
North Ryde
Sydney, New South Wales 2109
Australia
Financial Research Network (FIRN) ( email )
C/- University of Queensland Business School
St Lucia, 4071 Brisbane
Queensland
Australia

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