Worried about your pension system, if you are in Canada, Australia or the Netherlands you need not worry as much as if you were living in the USA, according to a report, published on the BenefitsCanada website. The report was written by The National Institute on Retirement Security, which is a United States non-profit research institute established to contribute to informed policy making by fostering a deep understanding of the value of retirement security to employees, employers, and the economy as a whole. NIRS works to fulfill this mission through research, education, and outreach programs that are national in scope I thought it was an interesting story to share. For more information check out the slideshow on their findings here or to read the report go here, or to listen to the report go here
Canada’s pension system receives a lot of criticism, but things here are better than they are south of the border. The Canadian system—as well as the Australian and Dutch ones—outshines the American one, new research reveals.
Australia’s universal workplace retirement system is a DC system in which employees are individually responsible for investment risks. “However, the success of the system is based largely on nearly universal coverage and high mandatory employer contributions, which are now a gross 9% of pay and will rise incrementally to a gross 12% of pay in 2019,” the study notes. Australia is also setting standards for things such as fee disclosure and financial advice.
Funded primarily by employers, the Dutch pension model provides some of the highest income replacement rates among wealthy nations. Employers are shifting market and longevity risks toward employees, but employees absorb those risks as a group and intergenerationally—not as individuals. Employers are passing on the risk to workers through the increased use of hybrid workplace retirement plans, called Collective Defined Contribution Plans. These are DC plans from an employer’s perspective but hybrid DB plans from the employees’ perspective.
Canada has a voluntary employer-sponsored retirement benefit system with lower coverage than the Australian and Dutch models. However, it also has a two-part government income system that replaces more than 70% of lifetime average wage-indexed earnings for low-income employees and about 50% for median-income workers, the study says. In Canada and the Netherlands, employee contributions to both DB and DC plans are tax-deductible.