Click here to skip to content

Welfare Reform on the Web (December 2011): Pensions - overseas

Bridging the gap

D. Adams

European Pensions, Oct. 2011, p.16-17

The EU Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provisions (IORP) Directive came into force in 2005 and aimed to create an internal market for occupational pensions and to promote the use of cross-border schemes. This article explores its impact and discusses current proposals for its reform. The European Insurance and Occupational Pension Authority has been asked to comment on the Directive, and has identified four options for reform: 1) to do nothing; 2) to broaden the definition of an occupational pension scheme; 3) to permit optional application of the Directive to schemes currently outside its scope; and 4) to extend the scope to cover all providers of occupational pension schemes operating 'at their own risk'.

Building blocks

P. Davy

European Pensions, Oct. 2011, p. 20-21

Austria's population is ageing rapidly and the current generous state pension system is unsustainable in the long term. However, there is little sense of urgency in developing reform proposals due to reluctance to confront the problem. This means that limited attention has been paid to boosting private and occupational pension schemes. Development of the second pillar is also being hampered by international regulation and the impact of the financial crisis.

Change with the times

M. Ritchie

European Pensions, Oct 2011, p. 22-23

Both Spain and Portugal have cut back their relatively generous state pensions in recent years due to pressure on their public finances. This article considers the impact the changes will have on private pensions and individual retirement saving.

Financial literacy around the world

Journal of Pension Economics and Finance, vol.10, 2011, p. 497-665

Through collaboration between teams from a wide range of countries, the research explored how the 2004 US Health and Retirement Study financial literacy questions worked in an international context, and how they related to patterns of retirement planning. Results showed that financial illiteracy is widespread both where financial markets are well developed and where they are changing rapidly. Women are less financially literate than men, the young and the old are less financially literate than the middle-aged, and more educated people are more financially knowledgeable. Most importantly, the financially literate are more likely to plan for retirement. Around the world, financial literacy is critical to retirement security.

Pension adjustment and its problems: a critical overview of the measures, exemplified on the basis of the German pension scheme

K. Kröger

International Journal of Behavioural and Healthcare Research, vol. 2, 2011, p. 375-394

Retirement income in Germany comes from a mix of the statutory pension scheme, occupational pensions and private pensions. A recent reform of the statutory pension scheme means that it will no longer rise in line with wages, increasing the importance of private and occupational schemes for income security in retirement. This article points out that a decline in the benefit provided by one pension scheme does not mean that benefits paid under another scheme will rise to compensate. This means that pensioners' income security in old age is threatened under a multi-pillar system.

Search Welfare Reform on the Web