Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #16--January 13, 2000

CAAR (Current Awareness in Aging Report) is a weekly email report produced by the Center for Demography of Health and Aging at the University of Wisconsin-Madison that helps researchers keep up to date with the latest developments in the field. For more information, including an archive of back issues and subscription information see:


I. Data:

1. CENSUS BUREAU: The Census Bureau has released U.S. population projections for 1999-2100. Included are summary data files, detailed data files, and population pyramids. Projections are available by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin for the resident and foreign born population. Tables are available in ASCII and .pdf format. The data is accompanied by a Population Division Working Paper: "Methodology and Assumptions for the Population Projections of the United States: 1999 to 2100," by Frederick W. Hollmann, Tammany J. Mulder, and Jeffrey E. Kallen (HTML and .pdf formats, 34p.).

>From the Abstract:

This working paper discusses the methodology and assumptions used to develop the recently released projections of the population of the United States from 1999 to 2100. The new series includes projections of the population by single year of age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, and nativity. While the basic methodology used to produce these projections is the same as in earlier Census Bureau national population projections, there have been changes, in both the time horizon and reference dates of the projections, as well as in the specific methods used to estimate population change. The extension of the series to 2100 carries the projections 20 years further into the future than any series previously issued by the Census Bureau. For the first time, projection results include a break on nativity, defined dichotomously by the presence or absence of U.S. citizenship at birth, as well as its cross-classification with other variables. Also new with this series is the projection to quarterly reference dates, allowing users to view the national population seasonally, or simply to select annual reference dates other than July 1. In addition, international migration in the new series is allowed to vary over time, remaining somewhat lower than the constant value in the previous series for the first two decades of the century, but reaching considerably higher levels than in the previous one after 2020. Fertility rates in both models are allowed to change very little over time. However, fertility rates by race and Hispanic origin are allowed to converge in the new middle series, whereas in the previous middle series they remained constant within race and origin category. Finally, the new mortality assumptions show more improvement in life expectancy for all racial and Hispanic origin groups, except the non-Hispanic White population, than did the assumptions of the previous projection series.

Press Release:

Click on "population projections" to link to data and working paper.

2. SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION CURRENT OPERATING STATISTICS: The following tables have been updated: 1E1 ,2A1, 2A2, 2A3, 2A4, 2A5, 2A6, 2A7, 2A8, 2A9, 2A10, 2A11, 2A12, 2A13, 2B1, 2B2. Note that these tables are in Adobe Acrobat .pdf format.

3. PSID ERRATA: University of Michigan Institute for Social Research Panel Study of Income Dynamics announced on Jan. 6, 2000 the following errata: "Variable labels from the 1994-1997 Early-Release Family files were mislabeled. These variables, from questionnaire sections G11A (Profit Business) and G11B (Loss Business) were reversed. See the Early Release Data page to download this most recent version.

4. ICPSR--CORRECTIONS: ICPSR's National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging has announced two corrections in information in the data release of NATIONAL SURVEY OF MIDLIFE DEVELOPMENT IN THE UNITED STATES (MIDUS), 1995-1996 (ICPSR Study # 2760).


The December release mistakenly attributed funding to the United States government in the front heading rather than The Jonh D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation as referenced in NOTE (2) of the release information.


The data release abstract mistakenly reported that the twin sample was drawn from the Main Respondents files.

II. Reports and articles


>From the Syllabus:

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA or Act), as amended, makes it unlawful for an employer, including a State, "to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual or otherwise discriminate against any individual" because of such individuals age." 29 U.S.C. 623(a)(1). Petitioners, three sets of plaintiffs, filed suit under the ADEA against respondents, their state employers. Petitioners suits sought money damages for respondents alleged discrimination on the basis of age. Respondents in all three cases moved to dismiss the suits on the basis of the Eleventh Amendment. The District Court in one case granted the motion to dismiss, while in each of the remaining cases the District Court denied the motion. All three decisions were appealed and consolidated before the Eleventh Circuit. Petitioner United States intervened on appeal to defend the constitutionality of the ADEAs abrogation of the States Eleventh Amendment immunity. In a divided panel opinion, the Eleventh Circuit held that the ADEA does not abrogate the States Eleventh Amendment immunity.

Opinions in HTML and .pdf formats (Cornell University Legal Information Institute)

Opinions in HTML format only but hyperlinked to other relevant formats (FindLaw):

6. BJS REPORT: The Bureau of Justice Statistics has released "Crimes Against Persons Age 65 or Older, 1992-97," by Jan M. Chaiken (NCJ 176352, January, 2000, HTML and .pdf formats, with spreadsheets in .zip format).

>From the Abstract:

Provides data from the National Crime Victimization Survey and the Uniform Crime Reports to summarize levels and rates of violent and property crimes against persons age 65 or older. Crime rates for the elderly are compared with those of other age groups. These crimes are murder, rape, robbery, assault, larceny, household burglary, property theft, and motor vehicle theft. The report also discusses 1992-97 trends, comparing the elderly with other age groups, and presents data on offender weapon use, self-protective measures by victims, victim injury and treatment, stranger versus nonstranger crime, place and time of occurrence, and victim and offender demographics, including gender, race, ethnicity, and household income. Crimes include both those reported to police as well as those that
were not reported by victims.

7. SSA OP MINT REPORT: The Social Security Administration Office of Policy Modeling Income in the Near Term data system (discussed in CAAR #14, Dec. 22, 1999) has added a RAND Corporation Report titled: "Final Report: Near Term Model Development Part II, by Constantijn Panis and Lee Lillard (January 2000, .pdf format, 163p.).

>From the Abstract:

[This report] primarily develops the demographic characteristics of MINT with respect to mortality and marital histories. Chapter 1 provides the background. Chapter 2 discusses the hazard models developed to project expected death dates and future marital histories in the MINT data system. Chapter 3 identifies useful stochastic elements in a simulation model. Chapter 4 discusses benchmarking the MINT to other projections including the mortality and marital status projections of SSAs Office of the Chief Actuary. Chapter 5 reports on an individual tax model developed for retirement income with the MINT data system.




A. "Health and Population Aging: A Multinational Comparison," by Gerard F. Anderson and Peter S. Hussey (October 1999, HTML format).

>From the Overview:

All industrialized countries are planning for an aging population. As the following charts comparing Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States show, governments have taken very different approaches toward long-term care, retirement policy, income maintenance, and other issues affecting elderly people.

B. "Meeting Future Health And Long-Term Care Needs Of An Aging Population," by Karen Davis and Susan Raetzman (December 1999, HTML format).

Information about The Commonwealth Fund:

9. _FORBES_ CHARTICLE: "Don't Open a Nursing Home Now," by Peter Brimelow (_Forbes_, January 24, 2000).


III. Working Papers

10. NBER Papers in Aging: "The Distributional Effects of an Investment-Based Social Security System," by Martin Feldstein and Jeffrey Liebman (National Bureau of Economic Research W7492, January 2000, .pdf format, 81p.).

>From the Abstract:

In this paper we study the distributional impact of a change from the existing pay-as-you-go Social Security system to one that combines both pay-as-you-go and investment-based elements. Critics of investment-based plans have been concerned that such plans might reduce the retirement income of low-paid workers or of surviving spouses relative to what they would get from Social Security, and might therefore increase the extent of poverty among the aged. Our analysis in this paper shows that this is generally not the case, even in plans that make no special effort to maintain or increase redistribution. Our principal finding is that virtually all of the demographic groups that we examine would receive higher average benefits under a mixed system with an investment-based component than the benefits that they would receive under current Social Security rules. There would also be a smaller share of individuals with benefits below the poverty line even though the total cost of funding the mixed system a three percent saving contribution rather than a six percent rise in the tax rate -- is substantially lower than that of funding the pay-as-you-go system. Our individual-level data permit us to go beyond comparing group means to analyze the full distribution of the benefits that individuals would receive under the two different systems. These comparisons show that the overwhelming majority of individuals would have higher benefits with the investment-based system than with the pure pay-as-you-go system. The relatively small number of individuals who would receive less from the investment-based system is further reduced when the effects of the Supplementary Security Income program is taken into account. These basic conclusions remain true even if the future rate of return in the investment-based component of the mixed system is substantially less than past experience implies.

11. NBER: "Private Pensions and Public Pensions: Theory and Fact," by Alan S. Blinder (National Bureau of Economic Research W902, June 1982., .pdf format, 86p.). Note: This is an out of print working paper that NBER has recently digitized and may be of historical interest.

>From the Abstract:

An economic theory of public and private pensions is developed, and the implications of the theory are compared with some empirical evidence, of both the econometric and casual varieties. Among the questions addressed are: why are there private pensions? why have they grown so rapidly in recent decades? why do they have the particular features that they do? why does the government intervene in regulating the provisions of private pensions and mandating a public pension system? what are the effects of private and public pensions on savings and retirement decisions?

12. INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND: Note: Occasionally, there can be complications printing IMF .pdf formatted papers. If you have problems see:

A. "Would Saving U.S. Social Security Raise National Saving?" by Jan Walliser (IMF Policy Discussion Paper PDP 99/7, July 1999, .pdf format, 23p.).

>From the Abstract:

Analysts agree that raising national saving is one of the key objectives of social security reform in the United States. Hence, to judge the merits of proposals requires a comparison of saving responses. The paper outlines the difficulties involved in making those comparisons, which arise from the unsustainability of the current social security system and the uncertainty regarding the use of projected budget surpluses. Building on previously developed arguments, it discusses three typical reform plans and also draws some conclusions about the relationship between social security reform and the long-run sustainability of fiscal policy.

and click on "full text in PDF format."

B. "Regulation of Withdrawals in Individual Account Systems," by Jan Walliser (IMF Working Paper 99/153, November 1999, .pdf format, 24p.).

>From the Abstract:

Funded mandatory pension systems based on individual accounts are spreading around the world. With the maturation of these systems, regulating the withdrawal of retirement savings will become increasingly important. Government regulation of withdrawals should mandate the purchase of infaltion-indexed life annuities exceeding income available from government welfare programs for the retiree and potential survivors. Proper functioning of insurance markets does not, however, require annuitizing the entire account balance. Instead, more flexibility for the choice of withdrawals could be permitted for any remaining funds, helping to tailor income streams to individual needs and living arrangements.

and click on "full text in PDF format."

C. "The Political Economy of Redistributive Social Security," by Pierre Pestieau (IMF Working Paper 99/180, December 1999, .pdf format, 22p.).

>From the Abstract:

Population aging puts significant pressure on social security systems that are based mainly on a pay-as-you-go (PAYG) formula and determined by the political process in which both retirees and future retirees participate. This paper demonstrates that in an economic and demographic steady state, majoritarian democracy overspends on social security. It then shows that in case of demographic shock, the regular majority process can be paralyzed by the development of entrenched interest groups that could lose from majority decisions. Depending on the way these entrenched interests operate, they can be judged more or less desirable from the viewpoint of social justice.

and click on "full text in PDF format."

13. FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DISCUSSION SERIES: "Do Pension Plans with Participant Investment Choice Teach Households to Hold More Equity?" by Scott Weisbenner (1999-61, October 1999, .pdf format, 37p.).

>From the Abstract:

Some retirement plans allow the participant to choose how funds are invested. Having to direct investments may provide the participant with financial education. This paper finds that households covered by pension plans in which the employee chooses investments are significantly more apt to hold stock outside of their retirement plan than are households with pension plans offering no such choice. The effect of investment choice upon non-pension asset allocation cannot be explained by portfolio rebalancing or differences in income and saving preferences across households. This provides some evidence that the design of a pension plan can influence an employee's financial decisions.

14. CENTER FOR RESEARCH ON ECONOMIC FLUCTUATIONS AND EMPLOYMENT (CREFE) AND ECONOMICS DEPARTMENT--UNIVERSITE DE QUEBEC A MONTREAL : "Is Menopause Optimal?" by Christian Zimmermann (CREFE Working Paper No. 99, December 1999, .pdf and PostScript formats, 13p..).

>From the Abstract:

Various theories have been put forward to explain the fact that humans experience menopause while virtually no animals do. This paper aims to investigate one such theory: as human babies are usually large and have long gestation periods, a substantial risk of death exists for the mother. It makes therefore sense to impose a stopping rule for fertility. However, this stopping age should not be too low, for the mother needs children to support her during old age. Given an objective (support for old age) and demographics (mortality of mother and children), an optimal age for menopause can be calculated. Using demographic data from populations that have seen little influence from modern medicine, this model is solved for the optimal menopause age, which is then compared to empirical evidence.

15. SEOUL NATIONAL UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS (KOREA): "Labor Market Status of Older Males in Early Twentieth Century America," by Chulhee Lee (Working Paper No. 27, January 2000, .pdf format, 38p.).

>From the Abstract:

This paper explores the labor market status of older males in the early twentieth century, focusing on the question of whether their departure from employment was forced or voluntary. A comparison of the hazard of retirement across occupations shows that men who had better occupations in terms of economic status and work conditions were less likely to retire than were those with poorer jobs. This result tends to reject the recent view that retirement in the era of industrialization was more voluntary than forced. The difficulty faced by older workers in the labor market, as measured by the relative incidence of long-term unemployment, was relatively severe among craftsmen, operatives, and salesmen. In contrast, aged farmers, professionals, managers, and proprietors appear to have fared well in the labor market. The pattern of shifts in the occupational structure that occurred between 1880 and 1940 suggests that industrialization had brought a growth of the sectors in which the pressure toward departure from employment at old ages should have been relatively great. This result supports the traditional view that industrialization had deteriorated the economic status of the elderly.

IV. Journal Tables of Contents (check your library for availability)

16. _Ageing and Society_ (Vol. 19, No. 6, Nov. 1999). Note: Your organization may have access to full text articles.

Click on title for abstract.

17. CARL Uncover Journal Tables of Contents. Follow the instructions below to access tables of contents.

A. Point your browser to:

B. click on "Search Uncover"
C. click on "Search Uncover Now"
D. Type the Journal Name in the search box and click the radio button "Journal Title Browse"
E. click on the journal name
F. click on "journal issues"
G. click on the issues identified below

_American Journal of Public Health_ (Vol. 90, No. 1, Jan. 2000). Note: This journal is available in full text in the EBSCO Host Academic Search Elite Database and the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of either of these two databases and of this issue.

_Journal of Health and Social Behavior_ (Vol. 40, No. 4, Dec. 1999). Note: This journal is available in full text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and of this issue.

_Journal of Cross Cultural Gerontology_ (Vol. 14, No. 4, 1999).

_Journal of Gerontological Social Work_ (Vol. 32, No. 3, 1999).

_Research on Aging_ (Vol. 22, No. 1, Jan. 2000). Note: This journal is available in full text in the EBSCO Host Academic Search Elite Database and the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of either of these two databases and of this issue.

_Omega: Journal of Death and Dying_ (Vol. 39, No. 4, 1999).

_Social Work_ (Vol. 45, No. 1, Jan. 2000). Note: This journal is available in full text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and of this issue.

_American Economic Review_ (Vol. 89, No. 5, Dec. 1999). Note: This journal is available in full text in the EBSCO Host Academic Search Elite Database and the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of either of these two databases and of this issue.

_American Journal of Epidemiology_ (Vol. 151, No. 1, Jan 1, 2000).

_International Journal of Aging and Human Development_ (Vol. 49, No. 2, 1999).


V. Legislation Information Updates

18. SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON AGING HEARINGS: The Senate Special Committee on has released two Hearings Publications (print availability only. They are: _Shopping for Assisted Living: What Consumers Need to Make the Best Buy_ (106-6) and _Passport to Independence: Battling the Leading Causes of Disability Among Seniors_ (106-9). These publications are available free of charge and can be ordered from the site.

VI. Websites of Interest

19. AOA PENSION INFORMATION RESOURCES: The Administration on Aging has opened a new meta-site (site that links to other sites) on Pension Information. At present, the site is divided into the major areas of Pension and Benefits Counseling Projects, Life Course Planning: Retirement and Financial Planning Resources Online, and Internet Information Note: Pensions and Pension Benefits.

Jack Solock
Data Librarian--Center for Demography and Ecology
4470 Social Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Madison, WI 53706