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Thursday, September 22, 2005

Employer pension plans (trusteed pension funds)

First quarter 2005

The value of the retirement savings of millions of Canadian workers with trusteed pension plans increased once again in the first quarter — the eighth consecutive quarterly gain.

Pension fund managers successfully boosted the value of fund assets to $712.8 billion during the first quarter, a 3.6% increase over the previous three months.

The value of funds has been rising since it hit a low of $532.4 billion in the first quarter of 2003.

Close to 39% of the value of all fund assets were held in stocks. Because of heavy investment in the stock markets, total asset value tends to track the movement of stock prices. For example, the TSX rose 3.9% in the first quarter.

Fund revenues amounted to $19.5 billion and expenditures $9.3 billion, for a net cash flow of $10.2 billion during the first quarter.

Contributions were relatively high at $6.7 billion, of which $4.6 billion were made by employers. Employer contributions have been on the rise since 2001. Up to that time many employers had been taking a contribution holiday because their pension fund investments were doing very well.

Benefits paid out in the first quarter amounted to just under $6.9 billion.

About 5.5 million Canadian workers belong to employer pension plans. Of these, about 4.5 million are members of trusteed plans. (Data in this release refer only to the trusteed plans, and all values are in current dollars).

The remaining one million workers with employer pension plans are covered by the consolidated revenue funds of the federal and provincial governments, or by insurance company contracts or Government of Canada annuities.

Available on CANSIM: tables 280-0002 to 280-0004.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey number 2607.

For more information about the current survey results and related products and services, or to enquire about the concepts, methods, or data quality of this release, contact Client Services (613-951-7355 or 1-888-297-7355; fax: 613-951-3012;, Income Statistics Division.

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Date Modified: 2005-09-22 Important Notices