SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – The company pensions of some eight million people may be cut next year because the four biggest pension funds do not have the legally required volume of assets.
The giant civil service fund ABP, which is one of the biggest in the world, the healthcare fund Zorg & Welzijn, and engineering funds PMT and PME are all in the danger zone, due to the current very low interest rates.
All four funds have booked a return on investment of at least 11% in the past six months but this has not been enough to make sure they have enough assets to cover their liabilities.
PMT and PME had already said cuts in 2020 were on the cards and on Thursday ABP and Zorg & Welzijn both said they may have to make cuts next year. All four funds have a coverage ratio of below 100%.
The news comes just two months after employers, unions and ministers reached agreement on revamping the pension system to head off the risk of pension cuts.