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Retirees take aim at feds’ target benefit plans

Retirees take aim at feds’ target benefit plans Getting on the bad side of retired Canadians is never a good idea, a lesson one might have thought today’s generation of politicians would have learned from Brian Mulroney when he tried to de-index pensions back in 1986. After incurring the wrath of seniors, particular one irate elderly woman who told him during a protest on ...more

Voluntary ‘doesn’t work’ as a retirement model: Don Ezra

Voluntary ‘doesn’t work’ as a retirement model: Don Ezra In a perfect world Canadians would be saving enough of their working income to provide for a comfortable and secure retirement. But there’s lots of evidence to conclude that when it comes to retirement planning, it’s far from a perfect world. There is plenty of information to suggest that left to their own devices Canadians can’t ...more

Overall lack of pensions narrows retirement income gap between men and women

Overall lack of pensions narrows retirement income gap between men and women As today’s women shatter glass ceiling after glass ceiling they are narrowing the gap with men in all walks of life. However, when it comes to retirement income, the lack of adequate pension provision for both sexes is becoming an unfortunate equalizer. The absence of workplace pension plans has resulted in a kind of race to ...more

Quebec’s VRSP model aims at workers without a pension plan

Quebec’s VRSP model aims at workers without a pension plan Whether it’s NEST in the United Kingdom, Australia’s superannuation system, the KiwiSaver in New Zealand, or the new VRSP in Quebec, all have one thing in common: a realization that people need some sort of nudge to help them save for retirement. The DC-type plans have some key differences, but a core element is a requirement ...more

Mandatory aspect of ORPP a bold initiative, says Jo-Ann Hannah of Unifor

Mandatory aspect of ORPP a bold initiative, says Jo-Ann Hannah of Unifor Retirement anxiety is a real and tangible concern for millions of Canadians. More than 60 per cent don’t have an occupational pension plan, and for them the traditional notion of the ‘golden years’ is fast becoming unattainable. Efforts are being made to solve the riddle of inadequate retirement income, with solutions including the promised Ontario Retirement ...more

Stay focused on market volatility, says AIMCo’s Leo de Bever

Stay focused on market volatility, says AIMCo’s Leo de Bever As Canadian pension plans surge back towards surplus on the strength of stellar 2013 investment returns, cooler heads realize the good times won’t last forever and that funds need to continue to manage risk to keep the pension benefits flowing to retirees. Leo de Bever seems to fit comfortably into this group of cautious managers. The ...more

Anxious workers would trade pay for pension benefits

Anxious workers would trade pay for pension benefits Canadians are becoming increasingly anxious that their retirement years may not be as golden as once imagined, and they are willing to bargain with employers to achieve greater retirement security. A report by Towers Watson, the Global Benefits Attitude Survey, reveals Canadians are so concerned about their retirement readiness, they are willing to trade wages for ...more

Saskatchewan Healthcare Employees’ Pension Plan Applauds the Appointment of New CEO Alison McKay

Saskatchewan Healthcare Employees’ Pension Plan Applauds the Appointment of New CEO Alison McKay The Saskatchewan Healthcare Employees’ Pension Plan (SHEPP) is pleased to announce the appointment of Alison McKay as Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Alison was selected to replace former CEO Brad Garvey who left the organisation in April, 2013 due to a sudden and unexpected illness. “I’m looking forward to the challenges ahead as SHEPP builds on recent ...more

ARIA exclusive: Adequate retirement income good for people and economy: Murray Gold

ARIA exclusive: Adequate retirement income good for people and economy: Murray Gold Even though analysis shows that an expanded Canada Pension (CPP) would benefit younger Canadians more than it would boomers at or near retirement’s door, some opponents of higher contributions to pay for better benefits insist younger Canadians would be footing the bill for an older generation that hasn’t saved enough. It would take decades for higher ...more

Increased longevity fuels retirement-income anxiety

Increased longevity fuels retirement-income anxiety The good news is that Canadians are indeed living longer and generally healthier lives. The bad news is that where there is life there is expense and Canadians, notably those not in a defined benefit pension plan, have to come up with the money to fund those extra years. And as Ian Markham, Retirement Innovation Leader ...more

Data shows pension coverage a problem for the private sector

Data shows pension coverage a problem for the private sector Pension experts across the developed world agree that a retirement crisis driven by the lack of adequate retirement income will have serious consequences for individuals and economies. The range of dire outcomes from not having enough retirement income include an increase in the rates of senior poverty, people simply not having enough income to ever fully ...more

Savings program designed to get workers in the habit of preparing for retirement

Savings program designed to get workers in the habit of preparing for retirement It’s not a pension plan, but it does have at least one important component of one: payroll deduction. And one of the hopes for it is that it will at least get low-income people without much in the way of potential retirement money to begin saving. The myIRA concept Barrack Obama announced in his State of ...more

NB retirees continue to fight for their pensions

NB retirees continue to fight for their pensions Politicians have learned to tread lightly when it comes to retirees and their pensions. Former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney will likely attest to that, remembering his encounter with a senior citizen during a 1986 protest in Ottawa. Mulroney had made a decision to partly de-index pensions, a move that earned the ire of protester Solange Denis, ...more

Lack of CPP reform unfair to younger Canadians: Mathyssen

Lack of CPP reform unfair to younger Canadians: Mathyssen Intergenerational fairness is a term often used in the context of pension reform, with opponents of measures to improve retirement security often asking whether younger Canadians should be on the hook for boomers who haven’t been able to accumulate sufficient retirement income. The chatter is most often heard in relation to proposals to beef up Canada ...more

Time to deal with retirement insecurity: Rankin

Time to deal with retirement insecurity: Rankin As Murray Rankin moves across the country meeting with ordinary Canadians “of a certain age” about pressing issues of today and tomorrow, including the provision of adequate retirement income, he wishes he could see some younger faces in the crowds. Particularly on retirement issues, which many experts and observers predict will impact younger Canadians as much ...more

We’re All Invested – DB plans “part of the solution” in addressing retirement income crisis

We’re All Invested – DB plans “part of the solution” in addressing retirement income crisis A retirement income crisis awaits us if action is not taken on expanding workplace pension coverage in Ontario and across the country. That was one of the key messages delivered at “We’re All Invested,” an information session held March 17 at the MaRS Centre in Toronto. The event was sponsored by the Healthcare of Ontario Pension ...more

Alberta pension plans set to return to surplus without any changes: McGowan of the AFL

Alberta pension plans set to return to surplus without any changes: McGowan of the AFL Public sector pension plans are the cornerstone of retirement security for more than 300,000 Albertans, and if changes need to be made to them, the reasons should be justified and transparent, says Gil McGowan, president of the Alberta Federation of Labour. However, the changes to the province’s pension plans being pushed by the Alberta government are ...more

Collective approach needed for DC to work: Baldwin

Collective approach needed for DC to work: Baldwin A conversation with noted pension authority Bob Baldwin is not a this-or-that exercise. Rather, when discussing the provision of adequate retirement income, the dialogue is more of a nuanced exploration of issues, challenges and solutions. If it’s absolutes you seek when it comes to retirement and pension questions, Baldwin offers a broader perspective. For instance, he ...more

DC retirement shifts planning burden onto individual’s shoulders

DC retirement shifts planning burden onto individual’s shoulders For a member of a traditional pension plan, the defined-benefit model, transitioning into retirement is a relatively simple process: you let your employer know you are moving on, sign some papers and wait for the pension to arrive, probably through direct deposit into your bank account. However, for the more than 60 per cent of Canadians ...more

DC plans need DB investment focus: Dickson

DC plans need DB investment focus: Dickson How to address retirement anxiety and provide an adequate income is a growing problem being tackled by pension systems and retirement experts throughout the developed world, with one country’s problems sounding very similar to another’s. A number of options have been discussed in Canada to resolve retirement income inadequacy, including expanding the Canada Pension Plan. In ...more

In The Headlines
Pensions benefit society as a whole – ARIA post

(Aug. 28, 2014) In the wake of the Great Recession, opponents of public sector defined benefit pension plans had a “field day” bad-mouthing the plans, writes Richard Perron in the Huffington Post. Now that the fog of the financial meltdown has started to fade, the pension plans can be seen for what they are and always ...more

Wynne urges premiers to take lead on pensions – ARIA post

(Aug. 28, 2014) Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne deployed a government-commissioned survey on pension reform to initiate a conversation with premiers, urging them to “take the lead on the issue,” reports the Globe and Mail. The Ekos survey found that only 15 per cent of Canadians are very confident in their ability to retire with sufficient retirement income, while ...more

Pension funds major players in commercial real estate – ARIA post

(Aug, 28, 2014) Pension funds remain major players in the commercial real estate market, helping to lift property prices, especially in major Canadian cities, reports the Globe and Mail. There has been a resurgence of private interests obtaining property, according to real estate sources, reports The Globe. Pension funds “spurred the market” in the first quarter ...more

DB good for employers: Towers Watson survey – ARIA post

(Aug. 28, 2014) Defined benefit pensions are good for employees in that they deliver a guaranteed stream of income for life, but as stated by many pension experts they are also good for employers in terms of attracting and keeping skilled workers. A detailed analysis by Towers Watson explores the value of employer-sponsored pensions in 12 ...more

Union members make more and have better benefits – ARIA post

(Aug. 27, 2014) Unionized workers make more than Canadians who are not part of a union, according to research by the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), maintains a release post to www.marketwired.com. On average, workers represented by a union make $6.42 an hour more than those outside  of a collective bargaining environment, a reality that benefits everyone, ...more

By 2030, $50 trillion needed for infrastructure – ARIA post

(Aug. 27, 2014) As governments look to rebuild infrastructure, pension plans are increasingly being considered for their investment potential, writes Janet Rabovsky in Benefits Canada. In trend that has been picking up steam since the early 2000s,  “private infrastructure investing has gathered interest from institutional investors,” writes Rabovsky, who adds that by 2030, $50 trillion is expected ...more

South Korean mandates pensions by 2022 – ARIA post

(Aug. 27, 2014) In another development that shows the issues of inadequate retirement income is a global concern, South Korea has announced it will require all local companies to introduce a pension plan by 2022, reports Reuters. The move is meant to help cover the costs of an expected surge in welfare expenses related to an aging ...more

DC sponsors more willing to help in decumulation phase – ARIA post

(Aug 27, 2014) Fear of increased fiduciary responsibility has kept employers at a distance from the decumulation phase of defined contribution schemes, but that may be changing, writes Jean-Daniel Côté in Benefits Canada. He recalls when employers at an annual Avantages Montreal DC conference were asked if it was likely that they would help DC members with their ...more

The ‘four per cent’ solution bears a closer look – ARIA post

(Aug. 26, 2014) Inquiring minds want to know. How much can one safely withdraw from retirement funds and still leave the capital largely intact? The ‘four per cent rule’ “is as close to a universal law as there is in financial planning. It says that retirees who don’t want to run out of money and are ...more

Quebec protesters react to ‘attacks’ on pensions – ARIA post

(Aug. 26, 2014) In an interview posted to www.realnews.com, Kevin Skerrett, an official with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), and Michel Lizée, a political economist specializing in pensions, spoke with Real News Network produce Jessica Desvarieux. The discussion centred on the rallies in Montreal and Quebec City, taking place to protest Quebec’s austerity measures, ...more

Ontario and Quebec form alliance – ARIA post

(Aug. 26, 2014) With Quebec and Ontario signalling their intent to work together on issues of common interest, what are the implications for matters of retirement income adequacy? In the Toronto Star, Martin Regg Cohn writes about a number of issues shared by the two provinces, including enhancing the Canada Pension Plan, a strategy not shared ...more

NB Liberal leader promises to nix shared risk plan – ARIA post

(Aug. 26. 2014) If elected premier of New Brunswick, Liberal Leader Brian Gallant is promising to cancel the province’s new shared risk pension model, reports the Prince Albert Daily Herald. New Brunswick switched from a traditional defined benefit approach late last year to what is being called a shared risk model, and garnered the anger of ...more

Canadians take ‘encore jobs’ after retirement – ARIA post

(Aug. 25, 2014) In what is becoming common enough to be identified as a trend, more and more retirees are returning to work, partly because they need to but also because they want to, writes Lisa Wright in the Toronto Star. She tells the story of a woman, now 78, who retired at 60. Although she ...more

Adequate retirement income keeps retirees off the GIS – ARIA post

(Aug. 25, 2014) Want proof that Canada is getting older, and significantly so? According to the 12th Actuarial Report, the number of Canadians drawing from Old Age Security (OAS) is expected to jump 60 per cent over the next 20 years, reports Benefits Canada. Put it down to all those baby boomers moving into the retirement years; ...more

Singapore looks to bolster retirement plan – ARIA post

(Aug. 25, 2014) Singapore is looking to bolster retirement income for low income pensioners, reports the Globe and Mail. The country plans to reform its mandatory retirement savings scheme to assist low income seniors; providing for its seniors is one of Singapore’s biggest challenges, The Globe reports its PM saying. The scheme, the Central Provident Fund (CPF), has achieved international ...more

Financial sector’s DB plans best funded – ARIA post

(Aug. 25, 2014) When it comes to the world of defined benefit plans, which sector has the best? Benefits Canada has the answer. The financial services sector has the best funded plans, with IT and healthcare companies among the lowest funded, reports Benefits Canada, referring to a study by BNY Mellon’s Investment Strategy and Solutions Group (ISSG). According ...more

DB takes the pressure off longevity risk – ARIA post

(Aug. 22, 2014) With people living longer, having a retirement plan that ensures the money lasts is a prudent strategy, reports the Huffington Post. Increasing longevity means it’s entirely possible that more of us will reach 100 years of age, and with the average retirement age being 67, that means 33 years spent living off retirement ...more

Older Canadians take eight per cent of part-time work – ARIA post

(Aug. 22, 2014) Despite representing the majority of jobs created in 2014, part-time work still only accounts for 20 per cent of total employment, reports the Toronto Star. Canada is not a nation of part-time workers, finds a new report by TD Economics, despite 60 per cent of the 95,000 jobs created since the start of the ...more

Rhode Island pension changes ‘test case’ for rest of America – ARIA post

(Aug. 21, 2014) Writing in Rolling Stone magazine, Matt Taibbi says Rhode Island’s pension reforms, the Rhode Island Retirement Security Act of 2011, was for more than local consumption. Rather, he continues, the reforms became a test case for the rest of the United States, almost two years before Detroit declared bankruptcy, blaming pension costs. Rhode ...more

Improving economy bolsters retirement savings – ARIA post

(Aug. 21, 2014) As the American economy improves, retirement savings also seem to be on the rebound, reports www.bpmmagazine.com. According to Deloitte’s 13th Annual Defined Contribution Benchmarking Survey, retirement accounts have jumped to an average of $95,000 from $85,000 in 2012, the magazine reports. Participation in DC plans is also up, jumping to 77 pert cent in 2013 ...more