Past Event

Innovation in Funded Pensions in Europe

The European Commission argues for more private retirement saving to supplement public pensions based on pay-as-you-go financing. Experience with private pension schemes in different EU member states is not always favorable. Indeed, several countries in Eastern Europe have scaled back their private pension plans. In the wake of the financial crisis, policy makers question whether […]

Date: Mar 11 - Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy

The European Commission argues for more private retirement saving to supplement public pensions based on pay-as-you-go financing. Experience with private pension schemes in different EU member states is not always favorable. Indeed, several countries in Eastern Europe have scaled back their private pension plans. In the wake of the financial crisis, policy makers question whether private pensions can generate stable, adequate and affordable retirement income.

Professors Nijman and Bovenberg will present new research highlighting innovations that allow private funded pensions to reconcile adequate and transparent old-age security with affordable and safe private old-age insurance tailored to the needs of heterogeneous consumers. This will be followed by comments from discussants and an open discussion with the participants. The discussion will be moderated by Karen Wilson, Senior Fellow at Bruegel.

Speakers

  • Theo.E. Nijman, Professor in Econometrics and Finance, Tilburg University and Scientific Director of Netspar, the Netherlands
  • A.L. (Lans) Bovenberg, Professor, Tilburg University, the Netherlands
  • Ole Beier Sørensen, Chief Pension Researcher, ATP, Denmark
  • Paul Watters, Senior Director Head of Corporate Research, Standard & Poors
  • Klaus Wiedner, Head, Insurance & Pensions Unit European Commission DG FISMA
  • Chair: Karen Wilson, Senior Fellow, Bruegel

About the speakers

Theo.E. Nijman is Professor in Econometrics and Finance at Tilburg University and Scientific Director of Netspar, a Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement in which ten universities and a number of insurance companies and pension funds participate, see www.netspar.nl. He has published extensively in the leading international journals on a wide variety of topics within empirical finance and econometrics. His recent work covers topics such as pension fund management, the optimal individual pension contract, measurement of inflation, interest and longevity risk, and performance attribution and measurement. Moreover, Theo Nijman is Academic Coordinator of Inquire Europe, which brings together investment professionals interested in understanding and developing quantitative solutions to investment problems. As a consultant Theo has been involved in all kinds of projects for many different financial institutions. In 2009 he was a member of the government appointed Goudswaard committee on structural reforms in the Dutch second pillar pension provision to assure sustainability of the system. In 2010 he was a member of the Expert Committee of the Actuarial Society on “Validity of the Actuarial Society’s projected survival tables”. In 2012 he became a member of the government committee on Valuation of Pension Liabilities (UFR Committee).

Lans Bovenberg is a Professor of Economics at Tilburg University. He started his professional career at the International Monetary Fund, served the Dutch government as economist at the ministry of economic affairs and acted as deputy director at CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis (Centraal Planbureau). In 1998, Bovenberg became a professor of economics at Tilburg University, where he served as scientific director of the Center for economic research (CentER). In 2003, he won the Spinoza prize –the most prestigious academic award in the Netherlands. With the prize money, he founded the research network Netspar in which various pension funds, insurance companies, public agencies and universities participate. He has published extensively in the leading international journals on a wide variety of topics: public economics, tax policy, environmental economics, institutional economics, pensions and aging, international macroeconomics and labor economics. For more than two decades now, Lans Bovenberg has been the most-cited Dutch economist in policy-oriented journals aimed at practitioners and policymakers. Between 2006 and 2014 he has been an independent member of the Social Economic Council (SER), which is the main advisory body on social-economic policy of the Dutch government.

Ole Beier Sørensen, Ph.D. is Chief Pension Researcher at the Danish pension giant ATP. His research covers a broad range of issues related to pension systems, pension reform and pension management. In recent years he has focused particularly on non-financial investment risks, risk sharing and risk mitigation in pension systems and the interplay of public and private pensions. Ole Beier Sørensen is a Board member at the International Centre for Pension Management at the Rotman Business School in Toronto, Canada, he serves as a member of the Advisory Board of the Centre for Pension Law at the University of Copenhagen and he is former chairman of the European investor network Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC).

Paul Watters is a Senior Director and Head of Corporate Research for Standard & Poor’s Corporate Ratings in Europe. He represents the corporate group on S&P’s Credit Conditions Committee and is a global coordinator in the Portfolio Analytics Team. He is responsible for the European leveraged finance default studies and is the joint author of S&P’s quarterly European Corporate Credit Outlook. Prior to his current role Paul has held various senior roles within S&P’s Leveraged Finance Group since joining S&P in January 2002, that included being a primary analyst for a portfolio of high yield credits in the metals and mining, chemicals and oil and gas sectors. Previous to Standard & Poor’s, Paul spent almost fifteen years working in debt capital markets in various senior trading and research roles with both Lehman Brothers and Nomura International. Paul read Economics at St Catharine’s College, Cambridge and is a CFA charterholder and a Fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers in the UK.

Klaus Wiedner has been Head of Unit in in DG Internal Market and Services (now DG FISMA) since March 2013, responsible for all aspects related to insurance and occupational and private pensions, ranging from prudential regulation and consumer protection to international standards. Current tasks include the finalisation and implementation of the new harmonised European supervisory regime for insurance (Solvency 2), negotiations of a Directive on consumer protection in the distribution of insurance products (Insurance Mediation Directive – IMD 2), negotiations of a Directive on Occupational Pension Funds (IORP 2) and international negotiations on mutual recognition of third country insurance supervisory regimes. From Nov. 2004 – March 2013, he was first Deputy Head, then Head of the Unit in DG Internal Market and Services, responsible for the general reform of the European procurement rules, defence procurement, the relationship between public procurement and other policies and enforcement of procurement rules in Member States. From 1996-2004, he was a member of the Legal Service of the European Commission, mainly competent for competition and public procurement law; internal legal advice and representation of the Commission in over 100 cases at the European Courts in Luxembourg. He has been a European Commission civil servant since 1996. From 1993-1995, he served in the Austrian Ministry for Economic Affairs, responsible in particular for competition policy. Wiedner studied law in Graz, Austria and at the College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium.

Event materials

Personal Pensions with Risk sharing: Affordable, Adequate and Stable Private Pensions in Europe by A.L. Bovenberg and Th.E. Nijman

Practical Details

  • Venue: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels
  • Time: Wednesday, 11 March 2015, 12:30 – 14:30, Lunch 2:00
  • Contact: Matilda Sevón, Events Coordinator – [email protected]
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