OECD Economic Studies

Frequency :
1609-7491 (online)
0255-0822 (print)
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OECD Economic Studies is the twice-yearly journal of the OECD Economics Department. It features articles in the area of applied macroeconomics and statistical analysis, generally with an international or cross-country dimension. Articles are derived from work of the Organization’s intergovernmental committees, including areas of work outside the Economics Department’s focus. Now published as a part of the OECD Journal.

Also available in: French

Volume 2003, Issue 2 You do not have access to this content

Publication Date :
09 July 2004
Also available in: French

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  09 July 2004 Click to Access:  Retirement Behaviour in OECD Countries
Romain Duval

This paper examines the impact of old-age pension systems and other social transfer programmes on the retirement decision of older males in OECD countries. For each of the 55-59, 60-64 and 65+ age groups, a new panel dataset of retirement incentives embedded in those schemes is constructed, focusing mainly on the implicit tax rate on continued work. These currently differ widely across OECD countries: they are high in most Continental European Countries, compared with Japan, Korea, English-speaking and Nordic countries. Simple cross-country correlations and panel data econometric estimates both show that implicit taxes on continued work have sizeable effects on the departure of older male workers from the labour force ...

  09 July 2004 Click to Access:  Labour Force Participation of Women
Florence Jaumotte

This paper examines the determinants of female labour force participation in OECD countries. The econometric analysis uses a panel data set covering 17 OECD countries over the period 1985-1999, and distinguishes between part-time and full-time female participation rates. It shows a positive impact on female participation of a more neutral tax treatment of second earners (relative to single individuals), childcare subsidies, and paid maternity and parental leave. On the other hand, child benefits reduce female participation due to an income effect and their lump-sum character. Female education, the general labour market conditions, and cultural attitudes remain major determinants of female participation. Simulations illustrate the potentially significant impact that some of the examined policies could exert on female participation ...

  09 July 2004 Click to Access:  Enhancing the Cost Effectiveness of Public Spending
Isabelle Joumard, Per Mathis Kongsrud, Young-Sook Nam, Robert Price

In most OECD countries, public spending rose steadily as a share of GDP over the past decades to the mid-1990s, but this trend has since abated. The spending pressures stemming from the continued expansion of social programmes have been partly compensated by transient or one-off factors. Pressures on public spending, however, appear likely to intensify, in particular as a consequence of ageing populations. Since most OECD economies have very little scope for raising taxation or debt to finance higher spending, reforms to curb the growth in public spending while raising its cost effectiveness are now required. Based on detailed country reviews for over two-thirds of OECD countries, this paper identifies three main areas for action: the budget process; management practices; and the use of market mechanisms in the delivery of public services ...

  09 July 2004 Click to Access:  Capital Stocks, Capital Services and Multi-Factor Productivity Measures
Paul Schreyer

Capital services measures have long been recognised as the appropriate concept to capture capital input in production and productivity analysis. However, only few countries’ statistical agencies construct and publish such capital services measures. This paper describes capital services measures developed by OECD and presents estimation methods and results for the G7 countries. By way of example, the consequences of applying capital services measures instead of measures of gross or net capital stocks in the computation of rates of multi-factor productivity growth are examined for three countries, the United States, France and Australia ...

  09 July 2004 Click to Access:  Towards More Harmonised Estimates of Investment in Software
Nadim Ahmad

The latest system of national accounts (SNA93) recommended that purchases of software (and any ownaccount production) should be treated as investment as long as the acquisition satisfied conventional asset requirements. This change added about 1 per cent to GDP in most OECD economies in the mid-1990s. However, the range of the revision has been significantly different across countries, leading many observers to question the comparability of these statistics. An OECD task force has formulated a set of recommendations describing a harmonised method for estimating software and this paper provides estimates of changes to GDP levels and growth that might be expected if the OECD recommendations were applied. Estimates of changes are also presented using an alternative harmonised method. Whichever harmonised method is applied, the impact on GDP levels is likely to be significant, and in some countries about 1 per cent of GDP ...

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