Toronto
07 February 2018
Reporter: Drew Nicol

Canadian pension funds chalk up strong 2017 returns


Canadian defined benefit pension plans ended 2017 banked annual returns of 9.7 percent, according to RBC Investor & Treasury Services All Plan Universe.

The 2017 revenue result marks the nine consecutive years of positive returns.

The RBC Investor & Treasury Services All Plan Universe accounts for $650 billion in assets held by Canadian pension funds.

RBC’s poll reviews Canadian defined benefit pension plan sponsors, showed their median funded status stands at 96 percent.

The poll revealed that nearly a quarter of respondents reported levels in excess of 100 percent and only 5 percent with funded levels of less than 70 percent.

“2017 was a strong year for Canadian pension plans, with year-over-year returns, despite a backdrop of ongoing global economic and political volatility,” said James Rausch, head of client coverage for Canada at RBC Investor & Treasury Services.

“The Bank of Canada rate hikes, the first in seven years, reverberated through the bond market, while the energy and commodity sectors continued to fluctuate and impact Canadian markets. Meanwhile, global equities continued to provide strong and stable returns.”

“Fund managers will continue to pay close attention to these strong global returns and geopolitical developments to maintain a diversified portfolio across asset sectors and classes in the year ahead.”

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