Pension funds

This section provides statistical data and background information on statistics on the assets and liabilities of pension funds (PFs).

Data

The new pension fund (PF) statistics provide more complete and detailed information than the previously published quarterly statistics. They are available as of the first quarter of 2016 and replace the non-harmonised euro area pension funds statistics that were previously published by the ECB in the context of euro area insurance corporation and pension fund (ICPF) statistics. ICPF statistics are available for the reference periods from the first quarter of 2008 to the second quarter of 2016 SDW.

Statistics on euro area PFs cover those EU Member States that had adopted the euro at the time to which the statistics relate.

The PF data refer to the assets and liabilities of PFs and currently cover end-of-quarter outstanding amounts and selected financial transactions. More granular data will be added later in 2017.

Outstanding amounts, or stock data, refer to the value of assets and liabilities at the end of the reference period.

Transactions, or flow data, refer to the net acquisition of a given type of asset, or the net incurrence of a given type of liability, during the reference period.

Euro area pension funds balance sheet

Aggregated balance sheet of euro area pension funds

Statistical Data Warehouse – Interactive data access

All pension funds time series

 

Background

Pension funds are financial corporations and quasi-corporations which are principally engaged in financial intermediation as a consequence of the pooling of social risks and needs of the insured persons (social insurance). Pension funds as social insurance schemes provide income in retirement, and often benefits for death and disability.

The reporting population comprises all pension funds located in the euro area, including pension funds which are foreign-owned subsidiaries(*) or branches of foreign entities. Branches and subsidiaries abroad of domestically owned entities are not included.

To enhance the short-term approach for users of pension fund statistics, new statistical requirements were included in the ECB Guideline of 4 April 2014 on monetary and financial statistics (ECB/2014/15) which was amended by Guideline ECB/2015/44 . The new reporting scheme defined for pension funds in the Guideline is aligned with the new ESA 2010 requirements and sets out the procedures to be followed by NCBs when reporting pension fund statistics to the ECB.

The ECB has been receiving the new quarterly pension fund statistics collected under the “pension fund short-term approach” and reported under the ECB Guideline on monetary and financial statistics (ECB/2014/15) since June 2016 (first data refer to March 2016). For the first and second quarter of 2016, the ECB also received in parallel the short-term insurance corporation and pension fund statistics.

* Subsidiaries are separate, distinct legal entities. For this reason, they differ from branches, which are businesses fully integrated within the main company and are not legally or otherwise distinct from the parent company. Subsidiaries are usually limited liability companies, while branches do not have their own legal status.

Historical data on insurance corporations and pension funds