This paper develops a unique cohort data set to study the decline in
U.S. saving. It focuses on four periods for which Consumer Expenditure
Surveys (CEX) are available: 1960-61, 1972-73, 1984-86, and
1987-90. These and a host of other microeconomic surveys are combined
with National Income and Product Account (NIPA) data and other
aggregates to form measures of cohort-specific consumption and resources.
The benchmarking of our cohort data set to NIPA aggregates
ensures that our findings relate directly to the decline in net national
saving measured by these aggregates.