Pension Fund Economics and Finance: Efficiency, Investments and Risk-Taking

1st Edition

Jacob Bikker

Routledge
Published November 30, 2017
Reference - 256 Pages - 22 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781138656802 - CAT# Y229344
Series: Routledge International Studies in Money and Banking

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Summary

Pension fund benefits are crucial for pensioners’ welfare and pension fund savings have accumulated to huge amounts, covering a major part of world-wide institutional investments. However, the literature on pension fund economics and finance is rather limited, caused, in part, to limited data availability. This book contributes to this literature and focuses on three important areas. The first is pension fund (in)efficiency, which has a huge impact on final benefits, particularly when annual spoilage accumulates over a lifetime. Scale economies, pension plans complexity and alternative pension saving plans are important issues.

The second area is investment behavior and risk-taking. A key question refers to the allocation of investments over high risk/high return and relatively safe assets. Bikker investigates whether pension funds follow the life-cycle hypothesis: more risk and return for pension funds with young participants. Many pension funds are rather limited in size, which may raise the question how financially sophisticated the pension fund decision makers are: rather professionals or closer to unskilled private persons?

The third field concerns two regulation issues. How do pension fund respond to shocks such as unexpected investment returns or changes in life expectancy? What are the welfare implications to the beneficiary for different methods of securing pension funding: solvency requirements, a pension guarantee fund, or sponsor support?

This groundbreaking book will challenge the way pension fund economics is thought about and practiced.

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