CalPERS retirees soon to surpass workers

by John Seiler | December 5, 2014 6:31 am

Outgoing San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed[1], the Democratic pension reformer, has a great joke. He says that, soon, his city will have a single employee; whose only job will be to mail pension checks to retirees.

CalPERS is gettin’ there.


In a few years CalPERS retirees are expected to outnumber active workers, a national trend among public pension funds that makes them more vulnerable to big employer rate increases.

A mature pension fund for a growing number of retirees becomes much larger than the payroll. So if the pension fund has investment losses, an employer rate increase to help fill the hole takes a bigger bite from the payroll.

The growing number of retirees, partly due to aging babyboomers, is one reason a staff report last week[3] argues that CalPERS has too much “risk” and should consider a number of options during a board workshop early next year.

The “employer” stuck with the “rate increase,” of course, is the California taxpayer.

Those who haven’t left.

Texas welcome sign

  1. Chuck Reed:
  3. report last week:

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