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Ottawa's Pension Gap: The Growing and Under-reported Cost of Federal Employee Pensions

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Author Info

  • Alexandre Laurin

    (C.D. Howe Institute)

  • William B.P. Robson

    (C.D. Howe Institute)

Abstract

Canadian public-sector pension plans typically do not use market yields to calculate their liabilities: if they did, Ottawa’s unfunded pension liability would stand at $227 billion – some $80 billion larger than reported in the Public Accounts. The value of the typical federal employee’s pension entitlement grows at more than 40 percent of pay annually – much faster than the contributions to fund it – putting taxpayers, most of whom face federal tax rules preventing them from funding as rich a retirement for themselves, at risk of having to bail out Ottawa’s pension plans.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.D. Howe Institute in its series e-briefs with number 127.

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Length: 6 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published on the C.D. Howe Institute website, December 2011
Handle: RePEc:cdh:ebrief:127

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Keywords: Pension Papers; Canadian public-sector pension plans; unfunded pension liability; Public Accounts;

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References

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  1. Alexandre Laurin & William B.P. Robson, 2009. "Supersized Superannuation: The Startling Fair-Value Cost of Federal Government Pensions," C.D. Howe Institute Backgrounder, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 122, December.
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Cited by:
  1. David R. Percy, 2012. "Resolving Water-use Conflicts: Insights from the Prairie Experience for the MacKenzie River Basin," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 341, February.
  2. Christopher Ragan, 2012. "Financial Stability: The Next Frontier for Canadian Monetary Policy," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 338, January.
  3. William B.P. Robson & Alexandre Laurin, 2012. "Federal Employee Pension Reforms: First Steps - on a Much Longer Journey," e-briefs 140, C.D. Howe Institute.
  4. Joseph Doucet, 2012. "Unclogging the Pipes: Pipeline Reviews and Energy Policy," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 342, February.
  5. Ake Blomqvist & Colin Busby, 2012. "Better Value for Money in Healthcare: European Lessons for Canada," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 339, January.
  6. Adam Aptowitzer & Benjamin Dachis, 2012. "At the Crossroads: New Ideas for Charity Finance in Canada," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 343, March.

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