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The Economic Effects of Aging in the United States and Japan

Due to falling fertility rates, the aging of the baby-boom cohort, and increases in life expectancy, the percentage of the population that is elderly is expected to increase rapidly in the United States and Japan over the next two decades. These fourteen essays show that, despite differences in culture and social and government structure, population aging will have many similar macro and micro effects on the economic status and behavior of the elderly in both countries.

The most obvious effects will be on social programs such as public pension systems and the provision for medical needs of the elderly. But, the contributors demonstrate, aging will also affect markets for labor, capital, housing, and health care services. It will affect firms through their participation in the demand side of the labor market and through their provisions for pensions. And aging will influence saving rates, the rate of return on assets, the balance of payments, and, most likely, economic growth.

This volume will interest scholars and policy makers concerned with the economics of aging.

372 pages | 120 line drawings, 108 tables | 6 x 9 | © 1996

National Bureau of Economic Research Project Report

Economics and Business: Health Economics

Table of Contents

Michael D. Hurd, Naohiro Yashiro.
1: Projection of Japanese Public Pension Costs in the First Half of the Twenty-First Century and the Effects of Three Possible Reforms
Seiritsu Ogura
2: The Effects of Demographic Trends on Consumption, Saving, and Government Expenditures in the United States
Michael D. Hurd
3: Population Aging and the Savings-Investment Balance in Japan
Naohiro Yashiro, Akiko Sato Oishi.
4: The Economic Position of the Elderly in Japan
Naohiro Yashiro
5: The Consequences of Population Aging for Private Pension Fund Saving and Asset Markets
Sylvester J. Schieber, John B. Shoven.
6: The Effects of Aging on National Saving and Asset Accumulation in Japan
Naoto Yamauchi
7: The Impact of Demographics on Housing and Nonhousing Wealth in the United States
Hilary W. Hoynes, Daniel L. McFadden.
8: Improvement of After-Retirement Income by Home Equity Conversion Mortgages: Possibility and Problems in Japan
Yukio Noguchi
9: The Effects of Special Saving Programs on Saving and Wealth
James M. Poterba, Steven F. Venti, David A. Wise.
10: The Economic Status of the Elderly in Japan: Microdata Findings
Noriyuki Takayama
11: Retirement Incentives: The Interaction between Employer-Provided Pensions, Social Security, and Retiree Health Benefits
Robin L. Lumsdaine, James H. Stock, David A. Wise.
12: Labor Market Implications of Social Security: Company Pension Plans, Public Pensions, and Retirement Behavior of the Elderly in Japan
Atsushi Seike
13: Changing Social Security Survivorship Benefits and the Poverty of Widows
Michael D. Hurd, David A. Wise.
14: The Net Pension Debt of the Japanese Government
Tatsuo Hatta, Noriyoshi Oguchi.
Author Index
Subject Index

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