UK - Employer contributions to funded workplace pensions have risen by £16bn ($26bn) in just two years, as employee contributions plummeted by £3.5bn over the same period, figures show.
Numbers from the Office for National Statistics, published today, show an increase in employer contributions from £40.8bn in 2008 up to £56.8bn today.
This compares to a fall in employee contributions from £43.7bn in 2008 to £40.2bn during the same period.
The statistics come from UK National Accounts, which show contributions to workplace pensions as ‘social contributions' of the household sector. This sector benefits from nearly all pension contributions.
The ONS said the employer contribution increase was to make up shortfalls in defined benefit pension schemes and also reflected a recent dip in employer contributions during the financial crisis when they fell to £40.8 billion due to increased pressure on employers' finances.
Employer contributions also tend to increase more slowly during periods of strong investment growth because they are partly determined by funding requirements, the statistics agency said.
The National Accounts also contains detailed information on the investments of insurance companies and pension funds.
In 2010, both sectors represented the largest share of total investment in mutual funds, accounting for 77% of investments.
Retirement providers also accounted for 43% of total investment in UK government bonds and for 39% in UK quoted shares.
The ONS stats also show the liabilities of the four largest unfunded public sector schemes - the NHS, teachers, civil servants and the Armed Forces - rose by 37% between the end of March 2009 and end of March 2010, due to changes in accounting assumptions.
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