Published online by Cambridge University Press: 13 December 2013
In many countries, governmental support for funded old-age programmes comes at the cost of at least partial mandatory annuitisation of accumulated assets in retirement. We survey regulatory frameworks for the payout phase of funded pension systems in seven European countries and the US and study the influence of mandatory annuitisation on the welfare of both rational and behaviourally influenced individuals using a dynamic life-cycle model. We show that mandatory immediate full annuitisation of retirement assets will reduce rational individuals’ certainty equivalent pension wealth by up to 54%. Softening the strict immediate annuitisation requirements along the line of regulatory realities in some of the surveyed countries reduces utility losses considerably. Behaviourally restricted individuals can benefit from full annuitisation at retirement, but generally they will also prefer more flexible regulation.