Exiting work and claiming pensions: Evidence from the Norwegian 2011 pension reform

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IZA Seminar

Place: Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 9, 53113 Bonn

Date: 14.10.2014, 12:15 - 13:30


Presentation by 

Josef Zweimüller (University of Zurich)


This paper studies the effect of a major pension reform on retirement behavior in Norway. The 2011 pension reform implemented flexible retirement between ages 62 and 75; introduced actuarially fair pension discounts for retiring early; and abolished the earnings test (which had imposed high implicit tax rates on labor earnings of pensioners). An important implication of the reform was that the decision to exit permanently from the labor market and the decision to claim a public pension benefits has become disentangled. In this paper we study how the reform affected the joint decision of exiting from work and claiming public pensions for private sector workers. Private-sector workers eligible to an occupational pension faced strong incentives to delay retirement while workers without an occupational pension did not. We find that the reform strongly delayed exit from permanent employment of the former group but not for the latter group. Both groups are substantially more likely to claim pensions already around age 62.

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