Working Papers

RSS Wharton Pension Research Council Working Papers

  • Financial Education Affects Financial Knowledge and Downstream Behaviors
    We study the rapidly growing literature on the causal effects of financial education programs in a meta-analysis of 76 randomized experiments with a total sample size of over 160,000 individuals. The evidence shows that financial education programs have, on average, positive causal treatment effects on financial knowledge and downstream financial behaviors. Treatment effects are economically […]
  • State-sponsored Pensions for Private Sector Workers: The Case for Pooled Annuities and Tontines
    This paper explains how state governments could create new low-cost lifetime assurance funds to help provide retirement income security for millions of private-sector workers who currently lack pension coverage. Basically, an assurance fund operates like a mutual fund held within a defined contribution plan, but with the added features of mortality pooling and fully-funded lifetime […]
  • Building Better Retirement Systems in the Wake of the Global Pandemic
    In the wake of the global pandemic known as COVID-19, retirees, along with those hoping to retire someday, have been shocked into a new awareness of the need for better risk management tools to handle longevity and aging. This paper offers an assessment of the status quo prior to the spread of the coronavirus, evaluates […]
  • Perceptions of Mortality: Individual Assessments of Longevity Risk
    Financially successful retirement depends in large part on managing longevity risk: individuals need to save during their working lives to cover expenses in retirement, and then they must spend down those savings carefully so as not to outlive their assets. Despite the centrality of individuals’ expectations regarding life expectancy, little is known about how longevity […]
  • Property Tax Deferral: Can a Public/Private Partnership Help Provide Lifetime Income?
    Many retirees will not have enough money from conventional retirement programs to maintain their standard of living once they stop working. To help support themselves, they will need to tap their home equity, the major asset for most middle-income older households. Yet tapping home equity is difficult: most people are reluctant to downsize and, even […]