European Business Schools Librarian's Group

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No 1086: A Certainty Equivalent Valuation of Social Security Entitlements

Sylvain Catherine ()

Abstract: This paper computes the certainty equivalent of the United States Social Security in a calibrated life-cycle model when the stock and labor markets are cointegrated. In the baseline calibration, the certainty equivalent of current workers and retirees is found to be 37% lower at the national scale than the sum of expected cash flows discounted at the risk-free rate. The results suggest that the present value of pension entitlements and the transition cost to a funded system may be largely overestimated if not properly risk-adjusted.

Keywords: Household finance; Social Security; Public liabilities; Portfolio choices

JEL-codes: D91; G11; G18; H55; H60

37 pages, February 13, 2015

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