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Britain's Pensions CrisisHistory and Policy$
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Hugh Pemberton, Pat Thane, and Noel Whiteside

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780197263853

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197263853.001.0001

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Anglo-Saxon Occupational Pensions in International Perspective

Anglo-Saxon Occupational Pensions in International Perspective

(p.190) (p.191) 13. Anglo-Saxon Occupational Pensions in International Perspective
Britain's Pensions Crisis

Steven Sass

British Academy

Occupational pensions are today a major ‘second tier’ in Anglo-Saxon retirement income systems, providing benefits to a significant portion of the elderly population atop the basic ‘first tier’ benefits provided by the state. In the United States, for example, employer plans provide one-fifth of the income of the elderly — one-quarter if earnings from work are excluded — half the amount provided by public plans. By the end of the 1930s, employer pension plans had become standard in governments and mature big businesses throughout the industrial world. They had become critical tools for strengthening, then severing, relationships with workers. Britain took a different tack to strengthening employer plans. It primarily leveraged the contracting-out provisions in the State Earnings-related Pension Scheme (SERPS), introduced in 1978.

Keywords:   Britain, United States, Anglo-Saxon, occupational pensions, retirement income, employer plans, State Earnings-related Pension Scheme

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