The Economics of an Ageing Population

The Economics of an Ageing Population

Macroeconomic Issues

ESRI Studies Series on Ageing

Edited by Paolo Onofri

The Economics of an Ageing Population studies the effects of demographic transition on the economies of industrialised countries. The authors demonstrate that an ageing population does not necessarily lead to a reduction in growth, providing that the working population are more productive and save a greater percentage of their income. They look in detail at the examples of Italy and Japan, two countries which have the fastest ageing populations in Europe and the world respectively.

Chapter 8: Incorporating demographic change in multi-country macroeconomic models: some preliminary results*

Ralph C. Bryant and Warwick J. McKibbin

Subjects: economics and finance, public sector economics, social policy and sociology, ageing


Ralph C. Bryant and Warwick J. McKibbin 1. INTRODUCTION Population ageing is occurring at differing paces and with differing degrees of intensity in the industrialized nations of the world. Significant ageing is already under way, for example, in Japan, Italy and Germany. Major demographic changes in the United States and Canada will begin in the second decade of the twenty-first century. With a still longer lag, the demographic trends will be manifest in developing economies as well. These changes in the demographic structure of populations will have major economic and political consequences. Government budgets, for example, will come under severe pressure. The levels of saving and investment and the overall saving–investment balance will change significantly in many regions of the world economy. These changes will be associated with large changes in cross-border flows of financial funds and goods. Whatever the proximate impetus for the changes, major adjustments in exchange rates and balance-of-payments positions will be required. The resulting international tensions will add greatly to the complications faced by national governments as they try to cope with the pressures on their domestic fiscal budgets and appropriately revise their economic policies. The Brookings Institution has under way a major program to study issues of population ageing. As a part of this program, the two authors have organized a project on the Global Dimensions of Demographic Change. The first product of the project was a series of workshops taking stock of what the economics profession does and...

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