SSE Working Paper Series in Economics, Stockholm School of Economics
It Sucks to Be Single! Marital Status and Redistribution of Social Security
() and Johanna Wallenius
Abstract: In this paper, we study the labor supply effects and the
redistributional consequences of the U.S. social security system. We focus
particularly on auxiliary benefits, where eligibility is linked to marital
status. To this end, we develop a dynamic, structural life cycle model of
singles and couples, featuring uncertain marital status and survival. We
account for the socio-economic gradients to both marriage stability and
life expectancy. We find that auxiliary benefits have a large depressing
effect on married women's employment. Moreover, we show that a revenue
neutral minimum benefit scheme would moderately reduce inequality relative
to the current U.S. system.
Keywords: Social Security; Spousal and Survivor Benefits; Marital Risk; Female Labor Supply; Redistribution; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: D91; E62; H55; J12; J26; (follow links to similar papers)
52 pages, February 23, 2017
Before downloading any of the electronic versions below
you should read our statement on
for viewing Postscript files and the
Acrobat Reader for viewing and printing pdf files.
Questions (including download problems) about the papers in this series should be directed to Helena Lundin ()
Report other problems with accessing this service to Sune Karlsson ()
or Helena Lundin ().
Design Joakim Ekebom