February 25, 2021

BBVA warns of the worst situation of the system if indexes are indexed to the CPI

BBVA warns of the worst situation of the system if indexes are indexed to the CPI

The revaluation of pensions according to the real CPI will leave the system in a situation even more negative than the current one, according to the forecasts of the BBVA study service, due to a more rapid growth of the pension with respect to salary.

The indicator of financial sustainability of the pension system, one of the indexes that BBVA Research has prepared to measure the financial health of the system and that it has presented today, shows how at the beginning of 2010 Social Security entered into a deficit situation.

This was due to the decrease in the number of members during the economic crisis, while the number of pensioners grew steadily, and to wage moderation since 2007, which reduced the overall contribution base and therefore the income of the system, while the amount of the average pension did not stop growing.

As of 2014, as BBVA Research data shows, there was a strong job creation that increased the income of the system, offsetting the increase in the number of pensions.

However, "the sustained increase in the sufficiency rate (the ratio between the average amount of the pension and the last salary received) continued to exert a strong pressure on expenses", until 2013, the year in which the system's deficit stabilized.

The benefit rate, another of the indicators presented today, measures precisely that adequacy of pensions, which reflects how with the entry into force of the rate of pension revaluation (IRP), which de facto meant updating to 0.25% , the growth of the average pension was contained.

The BBVA Research economist Javier Alonso has advanced that the objective of the indicators presented today is to project the behavior of the system in the long term, taking into account both the current IRP and the CPI, in order to evaluate the impact of both revaluation indices.

"With a lot of security, the indicator of financial sustainability would become more negative" by updating pensions according to the real CPI, as established by the principle of agreement reached in the parliamentary committee of the Toledo Pact.

On the other hand, "the substitution rate would grow more rapidly than it has grown in recent years," said Alonso, who has made it clear that the pension system "has a problem of actuarial balance", that is, that it Quotes less than what is received throughout life.

The substitution rate has not stopped growing until reaching 64%, he said, a rate that is ranked as the third highest in the EU, which shows that "the Spanish pension system is one of the most generous of the EU and the trend is that it will continue to be even more ".

He explained that workers contribute 28% of their salary, a rate that has remained constant since the 70s, but live 6 years more than then from the date of retirement, which means that, "with the same savings are paid six more years of pension ".

"The IRP tried to correct this situation, along with measures to solve the financial balance of the system", added Alonso, but applying the CPI the deficit "will get even worse".

According to data from the study service, if the pension reform of 2013 were reversed, the average deficit of the pension system in the year 2050 would range between 8.3% and 5.53% of GDP, depending on whether the calculation of researchers or institutions.

However, taking into account this reform (which implemented the IRP and the Sustainability Factor) would significantly reduce the financial imbalance of the system to values ​​between 2% and 3% of GDP.


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