PEF home page and weblog
Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’m co-author of a blog post titled “The Federal Role in Poverty Reduction.” Points raised in the blog post include the following: -Canada’s Minister of Families, Children and Social Development has been tasked to lead the development of a Canada Poverty Reduction Strategy. -Total public […]
Posted by Nick Falvo under aboriginal peoples, Balanced budgets, child benefits, Child Care, corporate income tax, CPP, debt, deficits, early learning, economic thought, federal budget, fiscal federalism, fiscal policy, homeless, housing, income distribution, income support, income tax, Indigenous people, inequality, labour market, macroeconomics, OECD, Old Age Security, poverty, privatization, public infrastructure, public services, Role of government, social policy, taxation, women.
February 8th, 2017
This fall, Canada’s Parliament will debate a proposal to expand the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). And over at the Behind the Numbers web site, I’m co-author of a blog post titled “Ten things to know about the CPP debate.” The blog post’s other co-authors are Allan Moscovitch and Richard Lochead. Points raised in the blog […]
Posted by Nick Falvo under Austerity, CPP, demographics, employment, income, income support, inequality, labour market, media, OECD, Old Age Security, older workers, part time work, pensions, population aging, poverty, privatization, progressive economic strategies, retirement, Role of government, self-employed, seniors, small business, social policy, taxation, unions.
October 29th, 2016
Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’ve written a blog post titled “Ten things to know about Canada’s guaranteed annual income debate.” Points raised in the blog post include the following: -There are people and groups on both the left and right of the political spectrum who favour a Guaranteed Annual […]
Posted by Nick Falvo under aboriginal peoples, Alberta, Employment Insurance, fiscal federalism, gender critique, guaranteed annual income, income, income support, Indigenous people, inequality, labour market, Old Age Security, Ontario, poverty, progressive economic strategies, Role of government, social policy, unemployment.
September 30th, 2016
Over at the Behind the Numbers web site, Allan Moscovitch, David Macdonald and I have a blog post titled “Ten Things to Know About Federal Income Support for Low-Income Seniors in Canada.” The blog post argues—among other things—that if the age of eligibility for Old Age Security were to move from 65 to 67, the […]
Posted by Nick Falvo under aboriginal peoples, budgets, Canada, Conservative government, CPP, demographics, economic history, election 2015, federal budget, Federal elections 2015, fiscal federalism, Harper economics, income distribution, income support, Indigenous people, inequality, labour market, Old Age Security, older workers, pensions, population aging, poverty, retirement, Role of government, seniors, social policy.
August 29th, 2016
Fossil fuel divestment campaigns have become a focus for climate change organizing, targeting university endowments, churches, foundations and pension funds. While the motivations are primarily moralâ€”if it is wrong to wreck the climate, it is wrong to profit from that wreckageâ€”there are important economic arguments for divestment. If we are to have a reasonable chance […]
[Cross-posted on my blog here.] Itâ€™s relatively common knowledge that employer-run pensions have been scaled back over the past few decades. Iâ€™ve decided to dig up some data on pensions for this post to see just how this has taken place in Canada, motivated by a recently-released analysis of US pension reformÂ that finds contradictions in […]
Another column by Gwyn Morgan in the Globe and Mail and another case of a 0.1 percenter telling the rest of us to “Do as I say, not as I do.” This time, it’s Gwyn recycling trash from the CFIB and Fraser Institute to claim defined benefit pensions for public sector workers are too generous […]
This piece wasÂ first publishedÂ in the Globe & Mail. In a move that caught everyone off-guard, Canada Post announced a five point â€œaction planâ€ last week that included phasing-out home delivery of the mail over the next five years, making Canada theÂ only G7 nationÂ to do so. Why? To â€œprotect taxpayers.â€ Of all the reasons that merit […]
The recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) should be a wake-up call for Canada. With a development model based on ever more fossil fuel extraction, Canada’s economy and financial markets are on a collision course with the urgent need for global climate action. The IPCC, for the first time, stated an […]
An oped based on my and Brock Ellis’ recent report, Canada’s Carbon Liabilities, was published in iPolitics (alas, behind a pay wall): Canada’s economic development model is on a collision course with the urgent need for global climate action. Worldwide, extreme weather events from drought to floods to powerful storms and record-breaking temperatures are making […]
Divestment from fossil fuels is an idea whose time has come. SparkedÂ by Bill McKibben’s Rolling Stone article last summer, “GlobalÂ Warming’s Terrifying New Math”, divestment campaigns are now up andÂ running on over 300 university campuses in the US, with 4 earlyÂ victories already notched. Students in Canada have declared tomorrowÂ (March 27) Fossil Fools Day, a national day […]
The C D Howe Institute have put out a study on later retirement by Peter Hicks, a former senior official with HRSDC and the OECD who has written a lot on the policy implications of ageing societies. I find this to be one of his less convincing efforts. The argument – with parenthetical comments – […]
Announcing a bad policy 10 years in advance doesn’t make it a good policy. So the fact that the Harper government is giving people at least 10 years to prepare for 2 years of life without an important source of income, hardly makes it OK — as so many media commentators have tritely implied.Â In […]
The Budget justifies raising the age of eligibility for OAS and GIS on the grounds thatÂ the long-term fiscal sustainability of the program is being undermined by rising life expectancy. No estimates of savings are provided. They will be very modest. Given that average life expectancy at age 65 is 20 years, raising the eligibility […]
Marc, Andrew and Toby have posted substantial analyses of yesterdayâ€™s federal budget and I have some comments in todayâ€™s Hamilton Spectator. My two cents about the budgetâ€™s economic forecasts follow. Table 2.1 envisions a 7.5% unemployment rate this year, slightly above last yearâ€™s rate of 7.4%. That seems like an admission of failure from a […]
Former Assistant Chief Statistician Michael Wolfson shows that governments collectively stand to save very little from hiking the age of eligibility for the OAS/GIS, a measure that is widely expected to be in Thursday’s Budget. The math (based on the SPSDM): In 2011, cutting OAS/GIS from seniors age 65 and 66 would save the federal […]
PRPPs – or what I prefer to call Mr. Flaherty’s Inferior Pension Plan or FLIP- are a poor alternative to the option of expanding the Canada Pension Plan. Unlike the CPP, PRPPs will not provide a defined pension benefitÂ in retirement; there is no required employer contribution; there is no inflation indexing; costs will be […]
John Stapleton has an opinion piece out on Prime Minister Harper’s proposed changes to Old Age Security (OAS)Â and the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS). I find the following quote from Stapleton to be particularly troubling: By providing OAS and GIS at age 65, Canada has greatly reduced the incidence of poverty among seniors. By moving the […]
Posted by Nick Falvo under Conservative government, CPP, demographics, fiscal federalism, income support, Old Age Security, older workers, pensions, population aging, poverty, retirement, seniors, social policy.
February 19th, 2012
Here is an overview of todayâ€™s timely Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives paper on Old Age Security: Old Age Security (OAS) is the basic building block of Canadaâ€™s retirement income system. Canadians build on that foundation, saving for their retirement with benefits from the Canada or Quebec Pension Plan, a workplace pension if theyâ€™re lucky […]
On CTV yesterday, human resources minister Diane Finley said (45 seconds into this interview): â€œAs we go forward, weâ€™re going to have three times the expense in Old Age Security as we do now, but weâ€™re only going to have half the population to pay for it.â€ That sounds pretty scary. If the total cost […]
It is argued that eligibility for OAS/GIS discourages older Canadians from remaining in the workforce, and that we need to keep them working to avoid labour shortages and a sharp rise in the so-called dependency ratio. But the fact of the matter is that 65 is not the trigger for retirement that it used to […]
No. Of course not. Even if the government waves around scary large increases in nominal dollar terms. As has been widely reported, the most recent OAS actuarial report shows that total program expenditures will rise from $38.8 billion in 2011 to $107.9 billion in 2030. However, the dollar figure reflects, not just an increase in […]
Canadian Press have put out a story based on a research paper by Richard Shillington which was commissioned by HRSDC from Informetrica, and obtained by the CLC through an Access to Information request. Receiving OAS is required to makes seniors eligible for the GIS top up, which provides one in three seniors with a supplement […]
To reprise a now topical earlier blog,Â hiking the age of eligibility for OAS will have the biggest impact by far on future seniors who are in low income. Many if not most of this group are unable to work due to disability or ill health. If the age of eligibility for OAS and GIS […]
Raising the age of eligibility for Old Age Security/Guaranteed Income Supplement (OAS/GIS) benefits is the worst possible way to deal with the retirement income security crisis facing Canadians. Experts such as former Assistant Chief Statistician Michael Wolfson project that one half of all middle income baby boomers face a severe cut to their living standards […]
Canada’s population, we are frequently told, is rapidly aging. The big baby boomer cohort is headed out of the workforce, meaningÂ that we face a future of very slow labour force growth and even possible shortages of workers. CIBC Economics has just gone so far as to argue that the Bank of Canada can afford […]
Good coverage in the Globe for the CLC’s calculations on the huge negative impact of high management fees on investment returns from RRSPs and the like, as opposed to the low cost CPP. Does anybody out there find the investment fund industry response (we are providing good advice) convincing? If so, you will just love […]
Following up on my post on wealth and income of the top 1%, Eric Pineault wrote to add some data on financial wealth distribution for Canada. HeÂ had a research assistant comb through microdata from Statcan’s Survey of Financial Security from 2005, and notes: “the 1% richest (all households are classed according to net worth rather […]
When it comes to the Canada Pension Plan, a major talking point from the right is that the CPP has “unfunded liabilities”, with the implication that is not affordable and financially unsustainable. This is nonsense, a scare tactic based on an accounting fiction that counts only future expenditures but does not count future revenues. For […]
The case for expanding benefits under the CPP as a needed response to the crisis ofÂ private pensions continues to win expert support – even as the financial industry and small business lobbies continue to fight real pension reform tooth and nail. The centre-right Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP) have published interesting and useful […]