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Article | Global Pension Finance Watch

Global Pension Finance Watch: Second quarter 2020

Investments|Pensions Risk Solutions

By Nathan Pavlik and David Finn | July 28, 2020

Improvements in the global financial markets during Q2 2020 drove positive second quarter pension index results for most regions.

Positive asset performance was either partially or completely offset by decreasing discount rates in all regions with, the exception of Japan. The overall impact of these changes resulted in positive pension index returns over the second quarter in all global regions, with the exception of Canada and the U.K.

While it is always the case that Global Pension Finance Watch captures results at the end of each quarter, we particularly want to highlight the point-in-time view of this publication in light of recent market volatility. Willis Towers Watson supports the daily monitoring of pension-funded status and other key metrics for those organizations wishing to inform key business decisions.

About this report

Global Pension Finance Watch, published quarterly, reviews how capital market performance affects defined benefit pension plan financing in major retirement markets worldwide, with a focus on linked asset/liability results. We cover defined benefit pension plans in Brazil, Canada, the Eurozone, Japan, Switzerland, the U.K. and the U.S. Specific plan results will vary, often substantially, based on liability characteristics, contribution policy, portfolio composition and management strategy, among other factors. The passage of time since quarter end may also have a significant impact on pension plan financing.

The impact of capital markets on these pension plans is twofold:

  • Investment performance on fund assets
  • Changes in economic assumptions on plan liabilities (as measured under international accounting standards)

If you have questions or comments about this report, please contact our Willis Towers Watson experts.

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