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Abstract

Population ageing exerts considerable pressure on the funding of public transfers. It is of utmost importance to understand how the transfer system can adapt to population ageing. Using National Transfer Accounts, we illustrate the different organisation of transfer systems across Europe. Countries like Greece and Romania, where labour income already falls short of consumption at age 54, would greatly improve their public system sustainability by following the Swedish example where this happens ten years later. High consumption at older ages is less problematic when financed substantially through savings (the UK) rather than almost exclusively through transfers (Austria).

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