Canada can learn from UK pension reforms

December 04, 2014 Tom Murray

RRIF Pensions UK Canada annuity rate

The UK Government has embarked on a major reform of the pension regulatory environment. Prior to this, the UK‘s policy was to encourage pension saving by giving tax breaks to regulated pension savings schemes, as a quid pro quo, but demand that the retiree use the money saved to support themselves through to death.
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Ontarians ‘Wynne’ a new pension scheme

June 13, 2014 Tom Murray

canadian pension plan ORPP Pensions Canada Liberals

Ontarians voted heavily last night in favour of the Liberals Kathleen Wynne and her Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP). The plan was included in the budget that toppled Wynne’s previous minority government and was made a central plank in the ensuing election campaign. Now that the Ontario Liberals have a majority in the provincial legislature, (looking like an 11-seat majority at time of writing), it is certain that the ORPP will be brought into existence very quickly.
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Ontario is playing politics with pensions

January 09, 2014 Tom Murray

federal finance minister Premier of Ontario Pensions Canada OPP

The Ontario Liberals are going it alone on pensions. Trailing a major move on increasing the Canadian Pension Plan throughout the year, they were not happy when the Federal Finance Minister poured cold water on the idea at the December meeting of provincial finance ministers at Meech Lake in December. As a result, they are now promising a supplementary Ontario-only pension plan, which they wish to impose in order to increase the guaranteed level of payments to future pensioners.
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Canada’s securities regulation reform is kicked to touch

December 17, 2013 Tom Murray

federal finance minister canadian pension plan Pensions passport Canada

The reports of yesterday’s meeting of the provincial finance ministers, under the chairmanship of the Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty , were predictably focused on the never-ending discussion about expanding the Canadian Pension Plan. However, a more important issue is being ignored by this relentless focus on pensions; the need for a single regulator for the securities sector throughout Canada. On this, the meeting failed to act decisively.
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If Canadian public sector pensions were run by US Congress…

October 03, 2013 Tom Murray

deficit Pensions us government Canada us congress

The shutdown of the US government shows what can happen when a government literally run out of taxpayers’ money and can’t spend any more. It set me wondering just how acceptable Canadians would find it, if the same principle was applied to public sector pensions. I.e. once they run out of money, the public sector would have to stop paying out, instead of being able to just rely on taxpayers to bail them out.
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Canada needs to resist politician’s syllogism

September 19, 2013 Tom Murray

financial products Pensions UK Canada advice gap

Politicians frequently act upon the politicians’ syllogism: We must do something. This is something, Therefore we must do this.
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Benefits Canada: Compulsion is the best solution for pension provision

July 30, 2013 Tom Murray

feasible longevity Pensions International Monetary Fund Canada

By Tom Murray, Head of Product Strategy, Exaxe.
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Why don’t more people use financial advisers?

July 04, 2013 Tom Murray

decumulation Pensions UK EU Canada

There are people who refuse to go to doctors, preferring self-diagnosis to getting a professional opinion. For many common illnesses their diagnosis is often correct. After all, most of us can diagnose when we have a cold, the flu, or a chest infection. So of course they can “cure” themselves, which reinforces their feeling that that they are as knowledgeable as the medics.
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Give PRPPs a chance

June 13, 2013 Tom Murray

employer responsibility Pensions Canada voluntary Life and Pensions

Canada’s great leap forward in terms of pension provision is taking shape. Pooled Registered Pension Plans (PRPPs) have now been adopted in a large number of Provinces and the rest are likely to follow quickly. However, the effectiveness of this innovation in saving is undermined by the purely support role that PRPPs are being allotted in the overall pension production, at least in the eyes of the majority of pension commentators.
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Eurozone latest victim of spreadsheets

May 07, 2013 Tom Murray

spreadsheets calculations Illustrate Plus Pensions UK

I have written frequently on the many risks to businesses due to their reliance on spreadsheets for calculations. The lack of auditability of changes made to spreadsheets and subsequently, the difficulty in tracing errors mean that the risks they pose in highly regulated complex financial environments are huge.
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