China to raise retirement age in stages – state researcher

Link: https://www.pionline.com/economy/china-raise-retirement-age-stages-state-researcher

Excerpt:

China plans to raise retirement ages gradually over a number of years instead of in a drastic one-time change, a government researcher said last week, without providing any detail on when the changes might start.

When the retirement age starts being lifted, it will be by a few months every year, or by a month every few months, according to Jin Weigang, head of the Chinese Academy of Labor and Social Security under the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security. Mr. Jin didn’t say when the changes would begin, but the current five-year plan calls for “raising the retirement age in a phased manner.”

“People in different age groups will be retiring at different ages,” Mr. Jin said in an interview with the state-run Xinhua News Agency published March 13. “For example, in the first year of the policy’s implementation, female workers who were originally scheduled to retire at 50 will retire one month or a few months after 50.”

Author(s): Bloomberg

Publication Date: 15 March 2021

Publication Site: Pensions & Investments

GPIF treads water as ESG picks up pace

Link: https://www.pionline.com/pension-funds/gpif-treads-water-esg-picks-pace

Excerpt:

The world’s largest pension fund had charted a course for sustainable investing, but the Government Pension Investment Fund, Tokyo, is now treading water.

After taking the helm of the world’s biggest pension fund as CIO in 2015, Hiromichi Mizuno sought to turn GPIF into a fund that — as one Harvard Business Review article put it — tried to “change the world” through its approach to environmental, social and governance investing.

However, the $1.63 trillion fund — constrained by stricter legal restraints than its peers — has largely been quiet on impact investing since Mr. Mizuno was succeeded in April 2020 by Eiji Ueda. At the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the global push toward ESG themes and GPIF’s peers around the world have cut fossil-fuel investments and threatened to pull funds from firms that fail to meet ethical standards.

Author(s): Bloomberg

Publication Date: 12 April 2021

Publication Site: Pensions & Investments

Vermont lawmakers seek pension reforms to stem funding shortfalls

Link: https://www.pionline.com/pension-funds/vermont-lawmakers-seek-pension-reforms-stem-funding-shortfalls

Excerpt:

Vermont lawmakers are pushing a plan to reduce a widening shortfall in the state’s retirement systems by asking teachers and state employees to pay more into their pension plans and work more years.

During a March 24 meeting, the Vermont House Government Operations Committee proposed teachers base contribution rates be raised by 1.25% to 2.25% and that most state employees be increased by 1.1%, according to a proposal posted on the Vermont General Assembly website.

The proposal also bumps up the age at which most workers can qualify for retirement benefits, requiring them to reach full Social Security retirement age, which is currently 66 or 67. Some groups of teachers and state employees can now retire as early as 62 or with 30 years of service.

In addition, employees will receive a lower overall benefit as it would be based on the average of their seven highest consecutive years of salary rather than the three highest as is now the case, according to the proposal.

Author(s): Margarida Correia

Publication Date: 29 March 2021

Publication Site: Pensions & Investments