حقوق بازنشستگی عمومی، بیمه بیکاری و رشد
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|24860||2000||19 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||6980 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Public Economics, Volume 75, Issue 2, February 2000, Pages 293–311
We develop an overlapping-generations model that highlights the interaction between an unfunded pension program and an unemployment insurance program in the presence of a labor market with union wage-setting. Both programs are financed by earmarked proportional wage taxes levied on firms and their employees. The equilibrium path entails endogenous growth and involuntary unemployment. The presence of spillovers between pension programs and unemployment insurance programs has striking implications for growth policy, efficiency issues, and the transition to a fully-funded pension system.
Plagued by high unemployment rates and slow economic growth, several European countries have started re-examining the role of their extensive social security system in this state of affairs as well as looking for suitable reforms in major branches of it. The current paper contributes to these efforts by offering a model of the social security system that incorporates some important institutional features of European welfare states and labor markets. Thereby it provides an analytic framework in which relevant policy issues are addressed. We develop an overlapping-generations model with endogenous growth that highlights the interaction between public pensions and unemployment insurance programs in the presence of a labor market with union wage-setting. Hereafter we refer to the combination of public pensions and unemployment insurance programs as the social security system (SSS) of the economy. As a first step, the pension system, in the form of the pay-as-you-go (PAYG) system, is modeled as a merely intergenerational redistributive device, whereas the unemployment insurance is modeled as an intragenerational redistributive device. Each program is supposed to be financed by earmarked proportional wage taxes paid by both firms and their employees. In our framework a number of clear-cut results can be obtained. First, the contribution rates to the SSS, by firms as well as by workers, are shown to have no influence on the level and path of the unemployment rate in the economy. This result parallels the type of results obtained in static models of unionized labor markets and imperfectly competitive product markets, in which the unemployment benefit is proportional to earnings (e.g. Malcomson and Sartor, 1987;Lockwood and Manning, 1993;Corneo, 1994). From an empirical viewpoint, the long-run employment neutrality of proportional payroll taxes has received some supportive econometric evidence by Cotis and Loufir (1990) for France and by Padoa-Schioppa (1990) for Italy.1 Second, the contribution rates to the SSS are shown to exert growth effects, which are negative for the contributions to the pension system and positive for those payed to the unemployment insurance. The result about a possible negative influence of the PAYG system on long-run growth has already been put forward in some former studies, e.g. Saint-Paul (1992). The empirical magnitude of this effect is the object of much debate. The finding that the unemployment insurance is beneficial for growth is, to the best of our knowledge, a new one. Third, we consider the possibility of a Pareto-improving reform of the pension system, from an unfunded to a fully-funded system. We take as our starting point the proposal made by Belan et al. (1998) for full-employment economies. We show that there is a suitable modification of this proposal which makes an efficient transition possible for economies with equilibrium unemployment. Fourth, we shed light on the issue of the optimal formal incidence of contributions, i.e. whether workers or firms should finance the SSS. We establish that there is no financing method that dominates another one on pure efficiency grounds. Thus, any change of contribution rates adversely affects at least one individual — in the current or future generations. However, one can rank the financing methods by their growth effects. Rather surprisingly, maximizing economic growth requires that firms alone finance the unemployment insurance and only workers finance the pension system if the latter is subject to a fixed net replacement ratio. In the current model the non-neutrality of formal incidence with respect to growth is due to the interaction between the PAYG system and the unemployment insurance, and would not arise if only one of these institutions were present. The interaction between the pension system and the unemployment insurance is mediated by the labor market and relies upon a simple fact: the level at which wages are set has direct repercussions on the formation of both retirement and unemployment benefits. Specifically, the kind of feedbacks generated by these links takes the following form. Shifting the incidence of the contributions from the firms to the workers generates an adjustment in the optimal wage policy of the trade union. In our model such wage adjustments offset the changes in the contribution rates so as to leave the rate of unemployment unaffected. For instance, shifting the incidence of the unemployment insurance from the workers to the firms reduces the wage level demanded by the trade union. Thereby it lowers the level of pensions and generates additional saving incentives. These additional savings show up in faster economic growth. The growth effect only arises if a PAYG system is at work, since under this institutional arrangement lower wages show up in less generous retirement benefits. A specular mechanism unfolds if the contribution rates to the pension system are manipulated. Shifting the incidence of the pension system from the firms to the workers — without altering the net replacement ratio — increases the wage level demanded by the union. Thereby, it increases the savings of the unemployed and is beneficial for growth. This only occurs in the presence of an unemployment insurance, because then higher wages translate into a higher unemployment benefit. The current article demonstrates that valuable insights can be gained by studying branches of the social security system in a unitary framework. Because of the externalities between programs, a branch of the social security system may have some economic effects that merely arise from the interplay with other branches, so that they may be overlooked if that institution is analyzed in isolation. In the theoretical literature, unemployment and retirement benefits have traditionally been studied in a separate class of models. Pension systems are typically analyzed in intertemporal models that focus on the saving incentives provided by the various systems (e.g. Barro, 1974;Feldstein, 1974;Kotlikoff, 1979;Breyer, 1989;Saint-Paul, 1992;Zhang, 1995). The usual assumption is that the labor market is perfectly competitive, so that there is no need for an unemployment insurance. Models of equilibrium unemployment, as those presented by Layard et al. (1991), usually neglect the role of the pension system. The current work might provide a step toward a more integrated analysis of the various branches of the social security system. The paper proceeds as follows. In Section 2 we set up the formal model. Section 3 determines the equilibrium trajectory. In Section 4 the above mentioned results are detailed. Section 5 digresses on the main assumptions of the model and considers some extensions.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The current model offers a manageable framework of analysis by incorporating a number of simplifying assumptions. In order to assess the robustness of our results, we now digress on the nature of some potentially controversial assumptions and how changes might affect our main conclusions. Impure redistributive effects In our model the PAYG system is treated as a purely intergenerational transfer system and the unemployment insurance as a purely intragenerational transfer system. This distinction is useful for modeling purposes as it enables us to detail the spillovers between the two programs in a very neat way. In reality however, neither program is limited to a single form of redistribution. On the one hand, in some countries people who are temporarily unemployed are still entitled to the same retirement benefits as those permanently employed. On the other hand, generations that are more severely hit by unemployment than others benefit disproportionately more from an unemployment insurance program. Different models of the trade union An assumption of our model that needs some discussion is that concerning the objective function of the trade union. We chose to adopt a Stone–Geary specification, which models in a simple way the trade-off that is perceived as being the crucial one for union decision-making, the trade-off between the unemployment rate and the real wage. A technical property of this specification is that it imposes unitary elasticity of substitution between the union’s objectives. While this may appear as a restrictive assumption, it turns out to be necessary in order to avoid that the equilibrium rate of unemployment converges either toward zero or toward one. Alternatively, one could adopt a model of collective decision-making within the trade union. The presence in our framework of pensioners who have conceivably been union members when young and the fact that the PAYG system links the pension benefit to the current wage raise some interesting issues about modeling. Arguably, the pensioners should play some role in shaping the union’s policy, but it is not clear under which type of collective decision rules this should occur, as many of them seem a priori plausible. One might also wonder about the changes induced by assuming that wage bargaining occurs at a decentralized level, possibly in an insider/outsider type of setting. While this alternative assumption will generally lead to a different equilibrium unemployment rate, we expect the qualitative properties established here to carry over to that alternative setting. If, for example, there is wage bargaining at the firm level, an increase in the contribution rates of firms might not be offset by a decrease of the gross wage at the partial equilibrium of a single firm, but we still expect some counteracting wage movement to occur in the general equilibrium. Altruism and endogenous fertility A branch of literature on pension systems incorporates the role of intrafamily altruism and endogenous fertility decisions (e.g. Barro, 1974;Lapan and Enders, 1990;Zhang, 1995). Allowing for altruism and endogenous fertility in our model poses some questions beyond those studied by the previous literature. In this respect the main novelty offered by our model is a unionized labor market which generates involuntary unemployment. Combining this feature with altruistic preferences and endogenous fertility decisions leads one to discuss, for example, the role of attitudes toward risk. To the extent that the occurrence of unemployment for one’s children is a stochastic event against which no full insurance is provided by the government, the degree of risk aversion should play an important role in shaping optimal savings, intrafamily transfers, and fertility decisions. Furthermore, the degree of intrafamily altruism, especially toward unemployed family members, may affect the degree according to which the trade union cares about the unemployment level. Potentially, these effects might significantly alter the way in which the transfer system set up by the government impinges upon unemployment and growth. Incorporating these features is a promising avenue for future research.