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Motivation, Agency, and Public PolicyOf Knights and Knaves, Pawns and Queens$
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Julian Le Grand

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199266999

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2004

DOI: 10.1093/0199266999.001.0001

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Agency and Public Finance

Agency and Public Finance

(p.85) 6 Agency and Public Finance
Motivation, Agency, and Public Policy

Julian Le Grand (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Examines how individuals should be left to make their own decisions with respect to other areas of welfare, such as saving for their pension or long‐term care. It concludes that there is a case for government intervention in individuals’ savings and insurance decisions. This case is based, not on some individual failure, but on various forms of market failure: information problems, transactions costs, and the fact that all relevant interests, notably future selves, are not being represented in the market. All of these problems suggest that, if left to themselves, people will save, or insure for, too little. Hence, the state needs to adopt methods of increasing people's savings.

Keywords:   future selves, insurance, long‐term care, market failure, pensions, savings

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