Individuals' uncertainty about future social security benefits and portfolio choice

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Abstract

Little is known about the degree to which individuals are uncertain about their future Social Security benefits, how this varies within the US population, and whether this uncertainty influences financial decisions related to retirement planning. To illuminate these issues, we present empirical evidence from the Health and Retirement Study Internet Survey and document systematic variation in respondents' uncertainty about their future Social Security benefits by individual characteristics. We find that respondents with higher levels of uncertainty about future benefits hold a smaller share of their wealth in stocks. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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