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The conventional dependency ratio based on cohort-invariant cutoff points could overstate the true burden of population aging. Using optimal cohort-varying years of schooling and retirement age in a life-cycle model, we propose a modified definition of dependency ratio. We compare the proposed economic-demographic dependency ratio (EDDR) with the conventional definition and find that the conventional dependency ratio of the USA is projected to increase by 0.105 from 2010 to 2060, which is an over-projection of 86% when compared with the projected increase of 0.015 in the EDDR over the same period. Sensitivity analysis suggests that our finding is quite robust to reasonable changes in parameter values (except for one parameter), and the magnitude of over-projection ranges mainly from 0.079 to 0.102 (i.e., 75% to 97%). We follow the well-established Lee–Carter model to forecast stochastic mortality and employ the method of expanding duration to decompose the sources of over-projection.
Singapore has a publicly managed central provident fund (CPF) system, which is compulsory and based on individual accounts with an explicit link between contribution and benefits. This paper assesses the adequacy of the CPF saving to meet the retirement needs of the elderly in Singapore. Instead of emphasizing the mechanism of accumulation, we focus on the expenditure side of the lifetime budget of the elderly and estimate the present value of retirement consumption (PVRC). The estimated PVRC is obtained by simulations through three major components: calibration of subsistence and medical expenses of the elderly; forecast of cohort survival probability by age and by sex; and generation of yield curves to discount the future cash flows. Our results indicate that the existing CPF-decreed minimum sum is inadequate to meet the future consumption needs of the female elderly. The inadequacy becomes more severe when medical expense is set at higher growth rates. Moreover, the monthly payouts of a single premium deferred annuity are computed as illustrative examples.
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