The UK Occupational Pension System in Crisis

Gordon L. Clark

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The crisis in occupational pensions in Britain extend beyond coverage rates and benefit levels. Private-sector sponsors of existing defined-benefit plans face an uncertain future notwithstanding the establishment in 2005 of the Pension Protection Fund. As for the public sector, the unfunded status of many defined-benefit plans raises significant doubts about their long-term viability. Whatever happens to the Turner Report, the pension crisis has just begun; it is bound to dominate domestic politics for another generation. Most private sector employees do not have access to social security entitlements while public sector employees may see their entitlements passed back to central government to become yet another liability on an already overburdened state. This chapter examines the crisis in the British occupational pension system, the link between pensions and modern capitalism, corporate capitalism in a global environment, lessons for public policy, capital market efficiency and occupational pensions in the public sector.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBritain's Pensions Crisis: History and Policy
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9780191734281
ISBN (Print)0197263852, 9780197263853
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Britain
  • Capital market
  • Capitalism
  • Defined-benefit plans
  • Occupational pensions
  • Private sector
  • Public policy
  • Public sector
  • Social security

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