This paper considers the impact of social security and the government financing mix on saving behaviour and aggregate economic activity. The theoretical argument for the neutrality of these actions is shown to have validity only if we consider the economy as behaving like a composite individual. Particular individuals do not face the same marginal rates of substitution and transformation as the hypothetical composite, due to corner solutions, illusions, and important distribution effects. Empirically, neutrality for the whole economy depends on the relative strengths of the offsetting forces faced by the individuals. Our findings with Australian data suggest that neither the level of aged pensions, nor the government financing mix, have substantial real effects on aggregate saving behaviour.
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - 1981|