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Finding Common Ground

In a week of yet more questionable research, dire predictions, and differing agendas, one analysis focused on what is particularly important: improving pension funding discipline.

As we’ve said before, employees always pay their full required contribution. Likewise, it is vital that municipalities make what actuaries say is needed to meet annual obligations, known as the ARC. Read more

The 13th Check

The very name sounds like a nefarious practice. Thirteenth pension payments conjure images of unbudgeted bonuses, opaque to anyone outside of the public employee retirement system.

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Women, Savings and Retirement

The U.S. Government Accountability Office report, “Trends in Marriage, Work, and Pensions May Increase Vulnerability for Some Retirees,” offers sobering data on the transition away from defined benefit (DB) plans to defined contribution (DC) plans: Read more

Getting Clarity on Pension Numbers in The New York Times

Words shape our understanding. The inclusion or omission of a word, or even punctuation, can change understanding. Just consider this reminder of the important role commas play in everyday life:

commas

So, too, the inclusion or omission of numbers, and the use of different calculations, present completely different views (something we have discussed before including here and here).

Which is why it is interesting that The New York Times has chosen the numbers it has for certain, recent stories. Read more

Pension Trusts and Municipal Bankruptcy

As anticipation mounts that Detroit will file a plan to adjust its debt with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court next week and with the ongoing confusion of public pensions, bond holders, and in the case of Detroit, art, PensionDialog spoke with Mr. Robert D. Klausner to better understand the basics of municipal bankruptcy.

Mr. Klausner’s firm, Klausner, Kaufman, Jensen & Levinson, represents state and local retirement systems in more than 20 states. He has assisted in the drafting of many state and local laws on public employee retirement throughout the United States. Following is a recap of our conversation. Read more

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