The problem of providing pensions for retirees is becoming acute. Dependency ratios are climbing in all western countries. By 2050 they will double in most western countries. In Japan, the number of retirees, now 35 percent of active workers, will reach 80 percent. Most European countries will have dependency ratios greater than 50 percent. The US, now about 20 percent, lags a little, because of continued immigration (mainly from Latin America), but the ratio will rise to 40 percent by 2050.
So there is no way retirement incomes for ever more elderly people can be paid for by taxing currently active workers in the future. So-called “defined benefit” pension funds were already in a difficult spot by 2007 because of aging populations.
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