Early retirement for the underprivileged? Using the record-linked SHARE-RV data to evaluate the most recent German pension reform

This paper demonstrates the potential power of linking SHARE survey data with administrative data. Administrative records from the German public pension provider identify those workers who benefit from the new early retirement pathway “retirement with 63” while SHARE data describe their socio-economic and health status. The beneficiaries of the reform are not the underprivileged as claimed by the government – they actually have a higher average net household income. There is no evidence that the beneficiaries are more often ill than non-beneficiaries. In fact, the opposite appears to be the case.

Netspar, Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement, is a thinktank and knowledge network. Netspar is dedicated to promoting a wider understanding of the economic and social implications of pensions, aging and retirement in the Netherlands and Europe.

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