The issues faced by public pension plans in the United States aren't especially unique, it turns out. Across the world, the bubble of retiring Baby Boomers and the generally flat (or faltering) labor market means huge changes will have to be made to pension systems.
According to Reuters, the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development suggests that raising retirement ages and moving pension systems into the 401(k)-styled private arena will be a necessity.
The organization, which represents 34 countries, says that pension ages have increased to at least 67 in 13 of those member nations, and more than a dozen have also changed their system to lower benefits for early retirement or reward those who work longer.
The global financial crisis has also hit pension holdings across the planet. Of the 21 countries that report their data, government-funded but privately managed pension systems lost 1.6 percent per year between 2007 and 2011 and their earnings, when averaged out, were only 0.1 percent per year.
"Such disappointing performance puts at risk both the ability of defined benefit and defined contribution arrangements to deliver adequate pensions," the report stated.
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