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In other countries, shares make a significant contribution to securing the standard of living of people in old age. This is the result of a study published today by Deutsches Aktieninstitut entitled "Altersvorsorge mit Aktien zukunftsfest machen – Was Deutschland von anderen Ländern lernen kann".
"No other issue offers as much socio-political explosive as the pension scheme. Although it is foreseeable that pension contributions will rise and pension levels will continue to fall, political decision-makers lack the courage to take decisive countermeasures in the face of the imminent pension crisis. As our study shows, we do not have to rediscover the wheel in old-age provision. Other countries have already shown us how to make old-age provision fit for the future with shares," stresses Dr. Christine Bortenlänger, Executive Member of the Board of Deutsches Aktieninstitut. "In order to fully exploit the potential of shares for future generations of pensioners as well, Germany must promptly introduce a savings process with shares," she demands.
The retirement provision study by Deutsches Aktieninstitut shows by means of an international comparison of countries, including Australia, Great Britain and Sweden, that all the countries examined have a significantly higher share of equities in retirement provision than Germany. It was also found out that the pension contributions invested in shares in these countries generate annual returns of up to ten percent. Since large sections of the working population are more or less obliged to participate in retirement provision with shares, people benefit from this income in old age.
In view of the study results, Deutsches Aktieninstitut is proposing recommendations for action that will enable German politicians to make full use of the potential of shares in our old-age provision as well. For example, a savings procedure on shares must be introduced, which will be supplemented, among other things, by an opt-out rule and a cost-effective, private-sector standard solution. While the opt-out ensures that those included in the savings scheme can object to this inclusion, the standard solution ensures a high level of acceptance of the savings scheme among employees.
"Pension provision in Germany must be meaningfully combined with the instruments offered to us by the capital market. This is the only way to make pensions less dependent on demographic developments and at the same time enable Germans to participate in the economic success of companies," emphasizes Bortenlänger. "We have so far failed to provide the younger generations in particular with the answer as to how we want to ease their burden with regard to the statutory pay-as-you-go system," she adds. "The results of our study are self-evident. I therefore appeal to the politicians responsible to rethink the German pension system by including shares. We are happy to make our expertise available to politicians."
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