No Crisis for Canadian and U.S. Pension Funding

August 2, 2007 ( - DBRS, a Toronto-based credit rating agency, has concluded from its annual study assessing pension plans "…that public perception of serious funding problems in pension plans, in both Canada and the United States, is a myth."

According to, DBRS vice president Peter Schroeder noted that, “[W]e found that over 25% of the plans reviewed can be classified as being over-funded, while over 70% could be described as well-funded.”

DBRS said in its report that plan performance, assumptions used, demographics, and regulatory and legislative changes when evaluating the 2002 to 2006 results of each pension plan “provide a clear picture of a healthy overall pension system.”

Schroeder said the DBRS expects, on an aggregate basis, pension shortfalls will be eliminated in 2007 and the number of fully-funded plans will increase.

The DBRS study reviews 536 pension plans, predominantly North American defined benefit plans, and notes the current funding and deficiency levels of each.

The full study can be obtained  here .