Saving Preferences After Retirement
42 Pages Posted: 13 Jun 2018 Last revised: 3 May 2022
Date Written: April 30, 2022
We investigate the importance of alternative motives for saving and spending patterns after retirement in the Netherlands and Australia. Using an online experimental survey, we elicit the impact on advised spending patterns and underlying saving motives of alternative retirement drawdown designs, ranging from complete flexibility in Australia to full annuitization in the Netherlands, and of major life events such as becoming frail or losing a spouse. We find that important motives for spending and saving after retirement in both countries are the desire to remain financially independent and to ensure that it is possible to enjoy life now as well as later. However, consistent with differences in real world pension settings, life span risk is more important and liquidity less important in Australia than in the Netherlands. With the exception of inter vivos transfers to a surviving spouse, the bequest motive is not important in either country. Our results suggest that an important reason for the widespread behaviour of retirees to hold on to their wealth might be the desire to hold precautionary savings for health and long-term care expenditures. We also find that individuals revise their saving motives in anticipation of major life events but are less responsive to variation in ‘experimental’ retirement drawdown arrangements, remaining aligned to the prevailing institutional arrangements in their country.
Keywords: saving motives, asset decumulation, pension design, consumption smoothing
JEL Classification: J14, J26, D14, D31
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation