The Pension Simulation Program MEA-PENSIM

Mitarbeiter in diesem Projekt:

To be able to analyze the future course of the German pension insurance system, along with the effects of actual and/or prospective reforms, one requires a simulation model capable of imaging the system in line with its decisive determinants. In the process, a variety of potential demographic and economic developments must be taken into account. MEA-PENSIM is a pension simulation program that is continually being advanced. It depicts the pay-as-you-go public pillar of the German pension insurance scheme as well as selected aspects of private funded retirement arrangements, and can thus be regarded as a simulation model for the entire multi-pillar system of old-age provision in Germany. MEA-PENSIM strives for realistic projections into the future of the German pension insurance system. It thereby focuses primarily on issues relating to the prospective effects of demographic change on contribution rates and the level of pension benefits. How serious are the consequences of a declining pension level – based on diverse reform scenarios – likely to be for retirees? Can the supplementary, government-sponsored Riester plan close the expected gap in statutory old-age provision? What share of retirees' pension income will eventually be provided by supplementary retirement arrangements? With the aid of versatile model calculations, the simulation program moreover estimates the impact of various pension-policy measures against the backdrop of differing assumptions about demographic and economic developments, and subsequently drafts appropriate reform proposals. Important questions here target the system's long-range stability, or the extent to which changes on the labor market are able to offset the repercussions of demographic change. Since 2015, MEA-Pensim was continually updated with respect to changes in the underlying model parameters. For instance, we considered the large migration inflow into Germany for the future development of the labor market and its consequences for the pension system and updated the population forecast in accordance with the German Statistics Office. We also included the latest pension reforms in 2014 and their impact on the labor force participation and pension claiming behavior. Moreover, the code was improved. Specifically, we switched from a calculation on a yearly to a monthly basis. This refines our analysis since for instance the increase of the statutory eligibility age happens in monthly steps. Further smaller improvements were: • the introduction of the calculation of the net standard pension level before taxes, • the refinement of the calculation of the general tax subsidy to the pension system, • the improvement of the rules for accumulating earnings points, • the programming of alternative pension adjustment rules to simulate reform options. The updated program was used to deliver forecasts of different reform options especially during the pension debate 2016 (see project 1.084). Furthermore, the outcome parameters from the MEA-Pensim projections entered various other projects, for example, the projection of the pension gap (project 1.080), the ISSP (project XXX) and the Peterson project (project 1.085)

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