Financial Market Trends

OECD’s twice-yearly journal providing timely analyses and statistics on financial matters of topical interest and longer-term developments in specific financial sectors. Each issue provides a brief update of trends and prospects in the international and major domestic financial markets along with articles covering such topics as structural and regulatory developments in OECD financial systems, trends in foreign direct investment, trends in privatization, and financial sector statistics covering areas such as bank profitability, insurance, and institutional investors.

Periodically, a small number of articles within one field of financial sector developments – constituting the so-called special focus for the particular issue – may be included.


Pension Funds for Government Workers in OECD Countries

In the past few years, there has been a trend towards the harmonisation of pension policies for private and public sector workers, with the introduction of occupational complementary pension funds for civil servants. In many OECD countries these funds are among the largest in terms of assets and number of participants and constitute an important share of financial assets. Nonetheless, civil servants’ pension funds are exposed to particular risks related to the multiple roles played by the state which is, at same time, sponsor, regulator, supervisor, service provider, fiduciary agent and recipient of pension fund investments. Specific government-related agency problems can arise with respect to these funds which differ from those frequently analysed in the private sector. This paper analyses these risks in light of the experiences of Australia, Canada, Japan, the Netherlands and the United States and identifies good practices on how to avoid or mitigate them.


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