Public Pensions, Version 2.0

In New Brunswick, Canada, city officials and union leaders are experimenting with a new, more frugal kind of public pension that’s based on the principle of “Shared Risk.”

Why Indexed Annuity Sales Are So Strong

Many factors are driving the increase in indexed annuity sales: More manufacturers, better products, more distributors, competitive commissions, aging boomers, and relaxed regulation. But does the bubble contain the seeds of its own deflation?

Lessons from a Living (DC) Experiment

Israel has found that even a mandatory defined contribution system can’t resolve all of the behavioral, economic, or administrative issues that prevent low-income and minority workers from saving for retirement. (Photo: Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem.)

What Advisors Want from Annuity Issuers

This week, RIJ received a press copy of “What Advisors Want from Annuity and Insurer Providers-2019,” a study by Practical Perspectives, a Boxford, MA-based financial services market research firm.
Featured

Chicago could learn from St. John

The Second City's municipal pensions are underfunded by billions of dollars. The mayor wants Chicago's public employees' unions to make the kinds of concessions that unions in St. John, New Brunswick, recently made, in return for neutral management of plan assets.

Living longer—and livelier

“Our major conclusion is that time spent in poor physical functioning is being increasingly compressed into the period just before death,” write David Cutler of Harvard, Mary Beth Landrum of Harvard Medical School, and Kaushik Ghosh of NBER.
News

Large private DB plans are mending fast: Milliman

"The last 12 months were the best 12-month period for corporate pension funded status in the history of our study," said John Ehrhardt, co-author of the Milliman Pension Funding Index.

Investors flock back to stocks

“The strong enthusiasm for equities should give contrarians pause,” said David Santschi, CEO of TrimTabs. “Four of the ten largest inflows into U.S. equity funds occurred at the peak of the technology bubble in early 2000.”

Variable annuity filings in May: Beacon Research

Principal Life, First Investors Life, Allianz Life, Lincoln National Life and Lincoln Life & Annuity of NY all filed N-4/A contracts for approval. (Links to contracts included.)

IRI announces speakers for its September 22-24 meeting

Featured speakers will include Roger Ferguson of TIAA-CREF, Dan Arnold of LPL Financial, Jonah Berger of the Wharton School, Lisa Bodell of futurethink, Joseph F. Coughlin of the MIT AgeLab and others.

Letter to the Editor

J. Spencer Williams, CEO of Retirement Clearinghouse, comments on our cover story last week on "Zombie" 401(k) Accounts.