In most developed economies, the majority of retired households rely on public and employer pensions for most of their income. Although pensions are usually illiquid and cannot be traded, they represent a claim on economic resources. A comprehensive measure of household wealth therefore requires the inclusion of pension wealth. This chapter outlines methodologies for valuing pension wealth. Although it refers to the US pension system, the principles can be applied to the pension systems in most developed economies. It first considers the valuation of Social Security wealth, and then considers pension wealth in defined-benefit pension plans and issues relating to state and local plans, and concludes with a review of defined-contribution plans.
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