1.1 million pensions will be cut in April, says central bank

Around 75 Dutch corporate pension funds will have to reduce pay-outs this year, and 40 of them will have to make a further cut in 2014, the central bank said in its latest report on the pension sector on Tuesday.

Five funds cut their pensions at the end of 2014 and the other 70 will follow in April, the central bank said. It did not say which funds will have to make cuts or how big the changes are.

By the end of this year, all the country’s pension funds are supposed to have brought their buffers back up to the required 105%. But 40 of the funds may miss this deadline, forcing a second round of reductions next year.

Millions of pensions

The cuts will affect some 5.6 million pensions, including 1.1 million people who have already retired. There is some duplication in this, because some people have paid into several pension funds over their career history.

The average cut will be around 1.9%, the central bank said in its statement.

The number of funds being forced to cut pay-outs is down slightly on September’s estimate. Then the central bank said 81 funds would be affected. A year ago, the figure was put at 103.

The improvement is due to ‘favourable developments in the equity markets’ and a ‘new calculation method for long-term liabilities,’ the central bank said.

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