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The purpose of this paper is to explain how the current “crisis” in the UK pension system arose. I argue that it is a result of a combination of changes in government…
The purpose of this paper is to explain how the current “crisis” in the UK pension system arose. I argue that it is a result of a combination of changes in government policy and basic instabilities always inherent in the financial system. Policy changes increased the vulnerability of the pension system to those instabilities. The background to these changes and also the frame of reference in terms of which the “crisis” itself is now phrased is broadly neoliberal. Its theoretical roots are in ideas of the efficiency of free markets. Its policy roots are expressed in a series of similar neoliberal policy tendencies in other capitalist states. I further argue that neoliberal solutions to the pension crisis simply offer more of the very matters that created the problems in the first place. Moreover, the very terms of debate, based in markets, financialisation of saving and individualisation of risk, disguise a more basic debate about providing a living retirement income for all. This is a debate that New Labour is simply not prepared to constructively engage with in any concrete fashion.
This paper surveys the social security system in several Latin American countries. Specifically, the cases of Bolivia and Brazil are documented in order to determine if…
This paper surveys the social security system in several Latin American countries. Specifically, the cases of Bolivia and Brazil are documented in order to determine if the Chilean model is a viable one in the Latin America and Caribbean region. An institutional approach suggests that while there has been a marked interest in tailoring pension funds a la Chile, policy makers of the region must be aware of the similarities and differences in the politico‐social‐economic environment. The macroeconomic transformation undertaken in Chile was a unique one obeying to specific conditions of time and process. It is indicated, however, that even in the case of developed nations, some features of the Chilean model may be very appealing as well.
There is significant variation in the way state-administered pension systems are structured in the United States. Some states, for example, consolidate their pension…
There is significant variation in the way state-administered pension systems are structured in the United States. Some states, for example, consolidate their pension activity into a few larger systems while others sponsor several smaller ones. In this paper we (1) identify arguments in favor of and against system consolidation, (2) measure levels of consolidation in state-administered pension systems, and (3) use logistic regression to examine whether levels of consolidation are associated with indicators of the financial health of state pensions. Our results provide preliminary support for claims that the size and concentration of pension activity are positively associated with measures of the financial health of state pensions.
Although tax relief on pensions is a controversial area of government expenditure, this is the first study of the tax effects for a real-world defined benefit pension…
Although tax relief on pensions is a controversial area of government expenditure, this is the first study of the tax effects for a real-world defined benefit pension scheme. First, we estimate the tax and national insurance contribution (NIC) effects of the scheme's change from final salary to career average revalued earnings (CARE) in 2011 on the gross and net wealth of the sponsor, government, and 16 age cohorts of members, deferred pensioners, and pensioners. Second, we measure the size of the twelve income tax and NIC payments and reliefs for new members and the sponsor, before and after the rule changes. We find the total subsidy split is roughly 40% income tax subsidy and 60% NIC subsidy. If lower tax rates in retirement and the risk premium effect of the exempt-exempt-taxed (EET) system are not viewed as a tax subsidy, the tax subsidy to members largely disappears. Any remaining subsidy drops, as a proportion of pension benefits, for high earners, as does that for NICs.
Introduction: The liberalization tendency in the economic system of most countries in the world exists in the last years. Our last research proves that in most cases…
Introduction: The liberalization tendency in the economic system of most countries in the world exists in the last years. Our last research proves that in most cases liberalism gives a positive effect on social-economic development (including pension system). However, constructive potential of economic liberalism is not everlasting, it means, first at some stages there is a certain end for the liberalization of the economy. Secondly, after a certain level (before the last level) liberalism may bring out an imminent shortage (the market sinister) in the free market in a destructive way. That is why one of the essential (and very difficult) duties of economic science is to define effective ranges of liberalism (accordingly, government regulation) for each certain country during a specific time frame. One of the differences of the pension system from other social protected chains is that this system is capable to liberalize. Is it possible to measure the degree of the government regulation of the pension system? Unfortunately, this chapter has revealed that there is no such methodology. The author has created a methodology for the first time that allows to measure the degree of government regulation in the pension system. This methodology is called the Index of Liberalism (Dirigisme) of Pension System (IL(D)PS). By calculating IL(D)PS, the author finds out that the regulation degree (interval) of the pension system. Measurement of the degree of government regulation in the pension system allows evaluating the social consequences of the implemented reforms. IL(D)PS has been calculated on the basis of four indicators: (i) ratio of the private pension assets (%GDP); (ii) ratio of the public pension expenditures (%GDP); (iii) social security tax rates for employers; and (iv) restrictions for investment of the pension funds. At the initial stage IL(D)PS has been calculated for 31 countries. Among 31 countries, there are developed, emerging, post-socialist countries and countries known for their revolutionary reforms in the pension system. According to IL(D)PS, the most dirigiste (leftness) countries are France (0.868), Greece (0.732), Italy (730) and Azerbaijan (0.704). According to the IL(D)PS, the most liberal (rightness) countries are Australia (0.208), Denmark (0.223), the Netherlands (0.231) and Canada (0.237). In Azerbaijan, pension provision is under governmental monopoly (extreme dirigiste system). The private pension system in Azerbaijan has not been formed yet. Azerbaijan has a certain degree of liberalization of the pension system. Aim: The author wants to measure the degree of the government regulation in the pension system. Method: The author have performed correlation, analytical-statistical and cross-country analyze. Findings: The degree of the government regulation in the pension system has been measured in 31 countries.
Much has been said about institutional change and the forms it can take, whether it is abrupt or incremental, path breaking or path dependent. This strand of research is…
Much has been said about institutional change and the forms it can take, whether it is abrupt or incremental, path breaking or path dependent. This strand of research is highly relevant in times of welfare institutional reforms and changes. A puzzle, however, remains, and it concerns the empirical phenomena that there might be institutional inertia despite seeming change. One reason for this remaining puzzle is, as argued here, that the ongoing theoretical reflections have a certain blind spot: “institutional constellations” and their characteristics. The purpose of this paper, therefore, is to analyse the “layering” of a welfare institution which results in an institutional constellation.
Such newly established institutional constellations, though they look roughly similar and are formed of comparable ingredients, can differ profoundly between themselves. This could be due to the fact that the characteristics of institutions depend on the regulating principles (the “spirit”) implemented in them. To validate this hypothesis, the author analyses in depth the institutional layering in two traditionally different social protection systems: the Dutch and the German pension systems.
In both cases, as the author shows, the traditional regulating principles are also implemented in the newly established institutional constellation, so that in the end pension systems do not change but differ as they did before.
The empirical phenomenon of institutional inertia despite seeming change has not yet been explicitly addressed. This is the case since the ongoing theoretical reflections have a certain blind spot: “institutional constellations” and their characteristics which are the focus of this paper.