Journal Article

Pension Challenges and Pension Reforms in Oecd Countries

Peter Whiteford and Edward Whitehouse

in Oxford Review of Economic Policy

Published on behalf of The Oxford Review of Economic Policy Ltd

Volume 22, issue 1, pages 78-94
Published in print January 2006 | ISSN: 0266-903X
Published online January 2006 | e-ISSN: 1460-2121 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxrep/grj006
Pension Challenges and Pension Reforms in Oecd Countries

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  • Economic Development and Growth
  • Public Economics
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The 30 OECD member countries have very diverse pension systems. Current old-age public pension spending varies between less than 1 and more than 10 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP). Public spending on pensions per person aged 65 or over varies from less than 15 to more than 40 per cent of economy-wide GDP per head. For workers entering the labour market today, the target pension from all mandatory sources for an average earner varies between 30 and 100 per cent of individual earnings. Recent pension reforms have a number of common themes. First, pension eligibility conditions have been tightened. Second, the indexation of pensions in payment has become less generous. Third, some pension schemes link benefit levels to changes in life expectancy. Finally, a number of countries have introduced defined-contribution pensions: privately managed schemes where the pension benefit depends on contributions and investment returns.

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Subjects: Economic Development and Growth ; Public Economics ; Political Economy ; Public Policy

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