WORLD - Best and Worst Pension Systems

Arno Froese

The Netherlands and Denmark have cemented their positions as having the best pension systems in the world, even as other countries falter during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to an annual global survey.

“Inevitably, this will impact future pensions, meaning some people will have to work longer while others will have to settle for a lower standard of living in retirement,” said David Knox, the report’s author and senior partner at Mercer. Stretched public finances mean public benefits in particular are under pressure, he said.

The rankings, based on more than 50 metrics, assess whether a system leads to improved financial outcomes for retirees, whether it is sustainable and whether it has the trust and confidence of the community.

The United States came in 18th with a C+ grade, a system that has good features “but also has major risks and/or shortcomings that should be addressed,” the report said, suggesting raising the minimum pension for low-income pensioners and increasing social security funding.

In top placed Netherlands, at present most workers enjoy defined benefit plans based on lifetime average earnings and a universal state pension. That means a worker gets about 80% of their pre-retirement earnings after stopping work, according to Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development data.

-www.bloomberg.com, 19 October 2020

Arno's commentary

The article by Bloomberg.com is quite revealing. Israel is placed at number 3. Quite remarkably, as always, is that Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are usually in the top 10 in any global quality-of-life survey. Interestingly, they are the nations where equality is not only talked about, but also practiced. When it comes to trade, monetarily exports are higher than imports, except Israel, Canada, and New Zealand which, quite noticeably, have slightly higher imports than Israel.

While a pension system does not necessarily show the productivity of a country, it does reveal that taking care of the pensioners and the workforce is a major characteristic which earns them their place in the top 10. There seems to be a distinct difference in outcome between the countries that pay fair wages and those that don’t.

Way back in olden times, some 3,500 years ago, we read in Leviticus 19:13: “Thou shalt not defraud thy neighbour, neither rob him: the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with thee all night until the morning.” Some rich countries apparently ignore that clear instruction.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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