Recognizing the many faces of poverty in Canada

To have effective policies, we need clear, understandable indicators for the most important dimensions of poverty

Recognizing the many faces of poverty in CanadaThe federal government is to be congratulated on its just-released Poverty Reduction Strategy. The strategy, running to over 100 pages, endorses the idea of an official poverty line, relieving Statistics Canada from the impossible task of finding a purely statistical basis of definition. It further endorses the idea that poverty has many dimensions – including…

Value of Canadian pension funds on the rise

More than 6.2 million Canadian workers belonged to employer-sponsored pension plans in the first quarter of this year: StatsCan

Value of Canadian pension funds on the riseThe market value of assets held by Canadian trusteed pension funds totalled $1.9 trillion in the first quarter of 2018, up three per cent from the fourth quarter of 2017 and 5.7 per cent higher year over year, said Statistics Canada on Thursday. It said that over 6.2 million Canadian workers belonged to employer-sponsored pension…

Energy sector drives up returns on Canadian pension plans and equities

But a new RBC Investor and Treasury Services report cautions that trade friction could impact the market

Energy sector drives up returns on Canadian pension plans and equitiesCanadian defined benefit pension plans were up 2.2 per cent in the second quarter and Canadian equities rose to 6.8 per cent. The latter reversed the first quarter loss of 3.9 per cent. A recent report from RBC Investor and Treasury Services All Plan Universe says the rebounding energy sector played a role. In a…

CPP’s perpetual head start

Private pensions face regulatory burdens that the Canada Pension Plan does not

CPP’s perpetual head startBy Moin A. Yahya and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute In 2016, in fulfillment of a campaign promise, the federal government reached an agreement with the provinces to expand the Canada Pension Plan. Consequently, mandatory CPP contributions from working Canadians will increase steadily between January 2019 and 2025. Expansion proponents have used many faulty claims…

The hard truth about CPP’s failures

Canadians receive meagre rates of return on CPP contributions and the program has other key shortcomings

The hard truth about CPP’s failuresBy Charles Lammam and Hugh MacIntyre The Fraser Institute Misperceptions plague the public’s view of the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), despite efforts to provide some clarity. Mark Machin, chief executive officer of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) – the organization tasked with investing CPP contributions – recently hit the road in a cross-country…

Any pension fund fiasco is one too many

The plight of Sears pensioners has once again ignited calls for change but the federal government seems content to sit on its hands

Any pension fund fiasco is one too manyThe demise of Sears Canada has seen 16,000 employees lose their jobs. It’s unfortunate, but inevitable, as online giants Amazon and Alibaba transform the retail universe. But what shouldn’t be inevitable is the loss of pension benefits for those employees and another 18,000 Sears retirees. If the 2009 bankruptcy of tech giant Nortel is a…

Unplugged from the reality of our energy needs

The green movement’s fossil-fuel divestment crusade hurts the poor and middle class

Unplugged from the reality of our energy needsIf you ever wonder how academics and activists combine to end up utopian, anti-poor and anti-middle class all at once, look no further than calls for savings and pension divestment from Canadian oil and gas companies. One academic from Toronto’s Ryerson University wrote of how “we are facing an impending disaster” from fossil fuels. The professor had…

CPP reforms need a complete rethink

The 2016 CPP reforms were solutions in search of a problem – and don’t even solve the imagined problem

CPP reforms need a complete rethinkBy Jason Clemens and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute The Canada Pension Plan (CPP) needs a comprehensive review, followed by real reform. The provincial and federal finance ministers said recently they will re-examine certain aspects of the CPP reforms agreed to in late 2016. But they will avoid a larger re-evaluation of the efficacy of an expanded CPP. Clearly,…

Should you defer collecting CPP and OAS?

Can you afford to hold off and increase your payments later? Will you need more CPP and OAS later in life? And how long do you expect to live?

Should you defer collecting CPP and OAS?Most people know they can start collecting their Canada Pension Plan (CPP) at age 60, even though they’ll get smaller monthly payments than if they waited until 65. Many people just want the money now and don’t care about any added benefits to delaying CPP and Old Age Security (OAS). The standard CPP and OAS…

Who benefits from an expanded CPP?

The government? Likely. High earners? Definitely. Middle-income earners? Unlikely. Low-income workers may even see a reduction in overall benefits

Who benefits from an expanded CPP?As recently as June 2016, the federal and provincial finance ministers agreed to expand the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). It's so recent, in government terms, that many of the details of benefit entitlements, costs and investment criteria still aren’t known. But it’s been long enough for deep thinkers on matters of social security to delve…