The Adequacy of Savings

21 Pages Posted: 5 Jul 2004 Last revised: 20 Sep 2010

See all articles by Laurence J. Kotlikoff

Laurence J. Kotlikoff

Boston University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy

Lawrence H. Summers

Harvard University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Date Written: February 1981

Abstract

This paper uses newly available data from the Social Security Administration's Retirement History Survey to examine the adequacy of saving. This data source is particularly rich; survey data for respondents covering the ydars 1969, 197 1( and 1953 have been matched with Social Security earnings records covering the years dating back to 1951. In addition to information on the path of lifetime earnhngs, the survey contains extensive data on individual asset holdings. The evidence indicates that surprisingly few couples currantly suffer significant reductions in their standard of living in their old age. This appears due, in large part, to our compulsory savings institutions, the Social Security and private pension systems. These institutions have succeeded in redistributing the lifetime consumption of private individuals from their youth to their old age.

Suggested Citation

Kotlikoff, Laurence J. and Summers, Lawrence H., The Adequacy of Savings (February 1981). NBER Working Paper No. w0627. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=227135

Laurence J. Kotlikoff (Contact Author)

Boston University - Department of Economics ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy

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Lawrence H. Summers

Harvard University ( email )

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Cambridge, MA 02138
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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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United States

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

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Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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