Pension Indices: April 2023
May 9, 2023
The Pension Indices by TELUS Health, released monthly, condense the journey that pension plans have experienced during the year into a few key statistics. More importantly, they also provide an early indicator of the challenges and opportunities that are yet to come for plan sponsors and administrators to help with the monitoring and management of their pension plans.
- Over the month of April, the funded position of a typical pension plan increased on a solvency basis, but decreased on an accounting basis.
- The investment return was 1.9% for the month for a representative pension plan portfolio, driven by mainly positive returns in equity markets and a decrease in bond yields.
- The global developed and emerging equity markets index, the MSCI ACWI, returned 1.7% in Canadian dollar terms. The Canadian equity index, the S&P/TSX Composite, finished the month with a return of 2.9%.
- Returns for Canadian bond indices were positive as yields decreased. Short-term Government of Canada bond yields decreased by 0.09% during the month and long-term Government of Canada bond yields decreased by 0.06%. Corporate credit spreads also saw a decrease in April.
- Market expectations for long-term inflation (the break-even inflation rate) were approximately 1.63% at the end of April, which represents a 0.05% decrease from the end of March.
- The accounting pension expense index saw an increase in April mainly due to a decrease in the accounting discount rates during this period.