Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis

Economic Benefits of Canadian Public Sector Pension Plans

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Research released by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis highlights the unique value provided by Canada's public sector pension plans across the country. The economic activity from the operations of pension plans and retirees spending their income supports 877,100 jobs and 55,500 businesses across Canada, supporting $33.1 billion in annual wages and $21.4 billion in tax revenue.

The report was commissioned by the Canadian Public Pension Leadership Council (CPPLC) to understand how public pension plans contribute to the Canadian economy. It shows that nationwide every $10 of pension payments generates $16.70 of economic activity and makes a total contribution of $82 billion (3.6%) to Canada's economy annually.

Canada's public sector pension plans provide retirement security to 1.85 million retired nurses, teachers, firefighters, bus drivers, social workers, janitors, and other public servants. The report finds that the $49 billion paid annually in pensions provides broad-based benefits spread across Canada geographically and demographically. In total, 39% of the 877,100 jobs supported go to people under 35; 797,900 children live in households where income originates from public pension plan activity; rural communities benefit by 6.4% more per capita than urban communities; and 72% of the businesses supported employ less than ten people.

The findings of the report highlight how public sector pension plans provide stability to regions across Canada through retiree spending and demonstrates how provinces benefit in different ways. Atlantic Canada has the highest percentage economic contribution; Ontario receives the biggest economic benefit per $10 of pension payment; and Alberta has the highest proportion of jobs generated for people under 35.