Disclose

In the spotlight: occupational pensions

Issue 2, 2016

Occupational pensions will impact the future of all generations.


Alex Astolfi

Alex Astolfi

Leader Assurance Switzerland

Thanks for clicking into Disclose! The theme of this issue is pensions. It’s a hot topic that has always stirred controversy, so I think you’ll find plenty of interesting and though-provoking reading.

Pensions are all about making certain sacrifices now so that you’re well looked-after later on. In this issue of Disclose we’ll be looking at the burden borne by the second pillar, and how this is shared and funded by the various generations. We’ll be discussing the implications of the system for the working population, employers and pensioners – the roles each of these groups currently play, and the roles they might play in the future.

Switzerland’s three-pillar system helps ensure social security and good industrial relations while allowing flexibility for people to meet their own individual needs. Those are all good reasons for taking care of the system. But occupational pensions face enormous challenges: people are living longer, interest rates are at rock-bottom, and funding pension benefits in the long term is turning out to be a herculean task. These are challenges pension funds and the social partners involved have to confront. They have to take care of the system and take responsibility for how it turns out.

One of the keys to funding occupational pensions is the conversion rate – or rather the ‘right’ conversion rate. We ask whether there’s even any such thing as the ‘right’ rate, and what this definition means for companies and the benefits they promise their employees. We also present PwC’s dynamic pension model, an entrepreneurially courageous solution designed to bring real-world circumstances, and the interests of pensioners and active members into alignment.

As always, Disclose also contains relevant information on accounting and financial reporting. In this issue we show how the same facts may be presented differently in the accounts depending on the financial reporting standard adopted. For example we look at the implications of measures to remedy situations where a pension fund’s ability to weather risk is impaired – not just for the insured persons, but for the financial statements of the company affiliated to the fund. We also explain why 1e pension plans are an attractive option for both employees and employers.

This issue of Disclose looks at pensions from many different angles. That’s important, because whether you’re responsible for a pension fund or otherwise involved, you have to keep your eyes open and look to the future.

Alex Astolfi

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Alex Astolfi

Alex Astolfi

Leader Assurance Switzerland

+41 58 792 81 95