Pensions, Non-Discrimination Policies and the Employment of Older Workers

QUARTERLY REVIEW OF ECONOMICS AND FINANCE

Posted: 2 Oct 1996  

John E. Garen

University of Kentucky - Gatton College of Business and Economics

Mark Berger

University of Kentucky - Department of Economics

Frank Scott

University of Kentucky

Abstract

This paper analyzes firms' decisions to hire older workers. We model the role of pensions in backloading pay for specifically trained workers. We then evaluate the effects of imposing age discrimination rules and non-discriminatory fringe benefit rules and analyze the consequences for the firm's decision to hire older versus younger individuals. The model predicts that defined benefit pension plans deter the hiring of older workers but only if hired for entry level positions. The reason is that the wages of this group cannot be lowered enough to pay for the benefits. Data from a new survey of employers are used to test this hypothesis. The findings show that a more generous defined benefit pension plan reduces employment prospects for older, entry-level workers. Employers offering defined benefit pension plans employ older workers but tend not to hire them into entry- level jobs.

JEL Classification: E6, H55, I38, J32, J7

Suggested Citation

Garen, John E. and Berger, Mark and Scott, Frank, Pensions, Non-Discrimination Policies and the Employment of Older Workers. QUARTERLY REVIEW OF ECONOMICS AND FINANCE. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3369

John E. Garen (Contact Author)

University of Kentucky - Gatton College of Business and Economics ( email )

Department of Economics
Lexington, KY 40506
United States
859-257-3581 (Phone)
859-323-1920 (Fax)

Mark C. Berger (deceased)

University of Kentucky - Department of Economics

N/A

Frank A. Scott

University of Kentucky ( email )

Lexington, KY 40546
United States

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