OECD Labour Market and Social Policy Occasional Papers

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This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected labour market and social policy studies prepared for use within the OECD. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language - English or French - with a summary in the other.


Getting Older, Getting Poorer?

A Study of the Earnings, Pensions, Assets and Living Arrangements of Older People in Nine Countries

Ageing involves not one but several transitions. People move from working to not working, from relying upon labour income to relying on transfers. They also tend to live in smaller households, not only because any children will have moved away but also because, at some stage, a spouse dies. People move homes and sometimes they move back to live with their now grown-up children.

This paper examines the wellbeing of people as they pass through the later stages of their life and through different labour market statuses and domestic statuses. It examines and compares nine countries – Canada, Finland, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. It draws particularly from a special analysis of micro-data sets that report on incomes, but it complements this with an analysis of data on wealth, on consumption, on housing and on the use of in-kind services provided by the state.

The paper is original in more than one way. First, its analysis is based upon the ...


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