Institutions and Saving for Retirement: Comparing the United States, Italy, and the Netherlands

TitleInstitutions and Saving for Retirement: Comparing the United States, Italy, and the Netherlands
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsKapteyn, A, Panis, C
EditorWise, DA
Book TitleAnalyses in the Economics of Aging
PublisherUniversity of Chicago Press
KeywordsConsumption and Savings, Methodology

This paper analyzes retirement saving and portfolio choice in the United States, Italy, and the Netherlands. In addition to relying on public retirement provisions, households prepare for retirement through tax-sheltered and after-tax savings. They may invest these funds in a wide variety of assets, including housing, stocks, bonds, savings accounts, and so on. These asset types differ in their risk, return, and liquidity characteristics as well as in their fiscal treatment. Economic theory postulates that housholds allocate their portfolios according to their risk aversion, time horizon, uncertain out-of-pocket medical expenditures, income risk, informal (family) risk-sharing arrangements, and more. While the literature has tested various parts of the theory, both testing and quantification of the theory are hampered by the fact that some of the major variables do not exhibit sufficient variation within a country to establish their relative importance for portfolio choice, or, more generally, for retirement saving and investment. This paper partially fills that gap by exploring three countries with widely varying institutional arrangements for retirement income.


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Endnote Keywords

Cross Cultural Comparison/Retirement Saving

Endnote ID


Citation Key5192