NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Population Aging and Intergenerational Transfers: Introducing Age into National Accounts

Andrew Mason, Ronald Lee, An-Chi Tung, Mun-Sim Lai, Tim Miller

NBER Working Paper No. 12770
Issued in December 2006
NBER Program(s):   AG   PE

In all societies intergenerational transfers are large and have an important influence on inequality and growth. The development of each generation of youth depends on the resources that it receives from productive members of society for health, education, and sustenance. The well-being of the elderly depends on familial support and a variety of social programs. The National Transfer Accounts (NTA) system provides a comprehensive approach to measuring all reallocations of income across age and time at the aggregate level. It encompasses reallocations achieved through capital accumulation and transfers, distinguishing those mediated by public institutions from those relying on private institutions. This paper introduces the methodology and presents preliminary results emphasizing economic support systems in Taiwan and the United States. As the two economies differ in their demographic configuration, their level of development, and their old-age support systems, comparing them will shed light on the economic implications of population aging under alternative institutional arrangements.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w12770

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