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Forms of Benefit Payment at Retirement


  • Pablo Antolín


  • Colin Pugh
  • Fiona Stewart



This paper focuses on describing the international practice on the various forms of retirement benefit payment currently allowed in countries throughout the world and the regulatory environment surrounding these different forms of benefit payment. The analysis suggests considerable variance between countries. Some countries only allow one form of retirement payment, while others allow several forms or even a combination of them. Examining country practices as regard the providers of benefit payments, suggest that lump-sums and programmed withdrawals are generally provided by pension funds; while, as regard life annuities, providers varied from insurance companies, to pension funds, financial intermediaries and a centralised annuity fund. The paper ends by examining the role of taxation where a choice between different types of benefit payments is allowed. Tax provision plays a key direct or indirect role in influencing payout options. Cross country evidence is varied but suggests that there is often an unequal tax treatment of the various forms of retirement payout options. Les différentes formes de prestations de retraite Pour l‘essentiel, ce document décrit les pratiques internationales en vigueur concernant les formes de prestations de retraite actuellement autorisées dans le monde, ainsi que les dispositifs réglementaires qui les régissent. Cette analyse fait ressortir de profondes disparités entre les pays. Certains n‘autorisent en effet qu‘un seul type de prestations, alors que dans d‘autres, plusieurs formules peuvent être envisagées, voir associées. S‘agissant des prestataires, l‘examen des pratiques nationales tend à montrer que les sorties en capital et les retraits programmés sont généralement proposés par des fonds de pension, alors que les rentes viagères sont servies par des compagnies d‘assurance, des fonds de pension, des intermédiaires financiers ou une caisse de retraite centralisée. Ce document s‘achève sur une analyse du rôle joué par la fiscalité lorsque plusieurs types de prestations sont possibles. Les dispositions fiscales exercent alors directement ou indirectement une influence décisive sur le choix des modes de sortie. Les données comparatives concernant les différents pays sont hétérogènes, mais laissent supposer que les divers modes de sortie sont rarement soumis au même régime fiscal.

Suggested Citation

  • Pablo Antolín & Colin Pugh & Fiona Stewart, 2008. "Forms of Benefit Payment at Retirement," OECD Working Papers on Insurance and Private Pensions 26, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:dafaab:26-en
    DOI: 10.1787/238013082545

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    Cited by:

    1. Marina Di Giacinto & Elena Vigna, 2010. "On the sub-optimality cost of immediate annuitization in DC pension funds," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 188, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
    2. Calisto Guambe & Rodwell Kufakunesu & Gusti Van Zyl & Conrad Beyers, 2018. "Optimal asset allocation for a DC plan with partial information under inflation and mortality risks," Papers 1808.06337,, revised Aug 2018.
    3. Laibson, David I. & Agarwal, Sumit & Driscoll, John C. & Gabaix, Xavier, 2009. "The Age of Reason: Financial Decisions over the Life-Cycle with Implications for Regulation," Scholarly Articles 4554335, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    4. Di Giacinto, Marina & Federico, Salvatore & Gozzi, Fausto & Vigna, Elena, 2014. "Income drawdown option with minimum guarantee," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 234(3), pages 610-624.
    5. Ade Ibiwoye & Lukman Ajijola, 2012. "An Actuarial Analysis of the Payout Options in Nigeria¡¯s Contributory Pension Scheme," International Journal of Business Administration, International Journal of Business Administration, Sciedu Press, vol. 3(6), pages 45-54, November.
    6. Marina Di Giacinto & Elena Vigna, 2012. "On the sub-optimality cost of immediate annuitization in DC pension funds," Central European Journal of Operations Research, Springer;Slovak Society for Operations Research;Hungarian Operational Research Society;Czech Society for Operations Research;Österr. Gesellschaft für Operations Research (ÖGOR);Slovenian Society Informatika - Section for Operational Research;Croatian Operational Research Society, vol. 20(3), pages 497-527, September.
    7. Halimah Sani SAMBO & Shehu Jafaru SALISU, 2020. "Impact Of Life Annuity As Payment Option On Nigerian Pension Funds," Proceedings of Administration and Public Management International Conference, Research Centre in Public Administration and Public Services, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 16(1), pages 103-111, October.
    8. Marina Di Giacinto & Bjarne Højgaard & Elena Vigna, 2010. "Optimal time of annuitization in the decumulation phase of a defined contribution pension scheme," Working Papers 2010-08, Universita' di Cassino, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche.
    9. Kabir, Rezaul & Li, Hao & Veld-Merkoulova, Yulia, 2018. "Do managers act opportunistically towards the end of their career?," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 218-232.

    More about this item


    benefit payments at retirement; caisse de retraite centralisée; centralized annuity fund; compagnie d’assurances; dispositif réglementaire; financial intermediaries; fiscalité; fonds de pension; insurance companies; intermédiaires financiers; life annuities; lump-sums; pension fund; prestations de retraite; programmed withdrawal; regulatory environment; rente viagère; retrait programmé; sorties en capital; taxation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G38 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies

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