NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Tatjana Schimetschek

Finance Department
Goethe University
Gr├╝neburgplatz 1 (Uni-PF. H 23)
Frankfurt am Main
Germany

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

January 2017Optimal Social Security Claiming Behavior under Lump Sum Incentives: Theory and Evidence
with Raimond Maurer, Olivia S. Mitchell, Ralph Rogalla: w23073
People who delay claiming Social Security receive higher lifelong benefits upon retirement. We survey individuals on their willingness to delay claiming later, if they could receive a lump sum in lieu of a higher annuity payment. Using a moment-matching approach, we calibrate a lifecycle model tracking observed claiming patterns under current rules and predict optimal claiming outcomes under the lump sum approach. Our model correctly predicts that early claimers under current rules would delay claiming most when offered actuarially fair lump sums, and for lump sums worth 87% as much, claiming ages would still be higher than at present.
October 2014Will They Take the Money and Work? An Empirical Analysis of People's Willingness to Delay Claiming Social Security Benefits for a Lump Sum
with Raimond Maurer, Olivia S. Mitchell, Ralph Rogalla: w20614
This paper investigates whether exchanging the Social Security delayed retirement credit (currently paid as an increase in lifetime annuity benefits) for a lump sum would induce later claiming and additional work. We show that people would voluntarily claim about half a year later if the lump sum were paid for claiming any time after the Early Retirement Age, and about two-thirds of a year later if the lump sum were paid only for those claiming after their Full Retirement Age. Overall, people will work one-third to one-half of the additional months, compared to the status quo. Those who would currently claim at the youngest ages are likely to be most responsive to the offer of a lump sum benefit.
 
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