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A pension fund, also known as a superannuation fund in some countries, is any plan, fund, or scheme which provides retirement income.
Pension funds typically have large amounts of money to invest and are the major investors in listed and private companies. They are especially important to the stock market where large institutional investors dominate. The largest 300 pension funds collectively hold about $6 trillion in assets. In January 2008, The Economist reported that Morgan Stanley estimates that pension funds worldwide hold over US$20 trillion in assets, the largest for any category of investor ahead of mutual funds, insurance companies, currency reserves, sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds, or private equity.
The Federal Old-age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund is the world's largest public pension fund which oversees $2.743 trillion USD in assets.
Open vs. closed pension fundsEdit
Open pension funds support at least one pension plan with no restriction on membership while closed pension funds support only pension plans that are limited to certain employees.
Closed pension funds are further subclassified into:
- Single employer pension funds
- Multi-employer pension funds
- Related member pension funds
- Individual pension funds
Public vs. private pension fundsEdit
A public pension fund is one that is regulated under public sector law while a private pension fund is regulated under private sector law.
In certain countries the distinction between public or government pension funds and private pension funds may be difficult to assess. In others, the distinction is made sharply in law, with very specific requirements for administration and investment. For example, local governmental bodies in the United States are subject to laws passed by the states in which those localities exist, and these laws include provisions such as defining classes of permitted investments and a minimum municipal obligation.
Largest pension fundsEdit
- Public Sector Superannuation accumulation plan (current scheme for federal civil servants)
- Military Superannuation and Benefits Scheme (current scheme for Australian Defence Force personnel)
- Public Sector Superannuation Scheme (old scheme for federal civil servants)
- Commonwealth Superannuation Scheme (old scheme for federal civil servants)
- State Super (for New South Wales state civil servants)
- MTAA Super
- LUCRF Super
- NGS Super
- Media Super
- AustSafe Super
- Energy Super
- REI Super
- The Retail Employees Superannuation Trust
- ANZ Australian Staff Superannuation Scheme (for employees of ANZ Bank)
- Fundação Banrisul
- Fundação CESP
- Fundação Itaubanco
- PSP investments
- Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
- Canada Pension Plan (investments directed by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board)
- Public Sector Pension Investment Board
- Alberta Investment Management
- British Columbia Investment Management Corporation
- Ontario Teachers Pension Plan
- Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology Pension Plan (CAAT)
- Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan
- Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP)
- OMERS Administration Corporation (OMERS)
- Ontario Pension Board (OPB)
- OPSEU Pension Trust (OPTrust)
- BC Pension Corporation including the College Pension Plan, the Municipal Pension Plan, the Public Service Pension Plan, the Teachers' Pension Plan, and WorkSafeBC
- Public Employees Pension Fund 
- TAPILTAT, the Fund for Mutual Assistance of the Employees of Ioniki Bank and Other Banks, the multi-employer auxiliary pension fund.
- Employees' Provident Fund Organisation - A Statutory body of the Government Of India that administers a compulsory Provident Fund Scheme, Pension Scheme and an Insurance Scheme. Provident Fund is applicable across for employees across establishments (Private as well as Govt - subject to criteria). EPF is the Largest Social Security Organisations in India with Assets well over ₹ 5 Lakh Crore (US$104 Billion) as of 2014. EPF
- National Pension Scheme - A defined-contribution-based pension scheme launched by the Government Of India open to all Citizens of India on a voluntary basis and mandatory for the employees of Central Government (except Indian Armed Forces) who are appointed on or after 1 January 2004. Indian citizens between the age of 18-65 are eligible to join. PFRDA
- Employees Provident Fund (Malaysia's largest, total assets of around RM407 billion in diversified portfolio)
- The Government Pension Fund - Global (Statens pensjonsfond - Utland)
- The Government Pension Fund - Norway (Statens pensjonsfond - Norge)
The pension system in Romania is made of 3 pillars, one is the state pension (Pillar I - Mandatory), second is a private mandatory pension were the state transfers a percentage of the contribution it collects for the public pension and third an optional private pension (Pillar III - Voluntary).
The Financial Supervisory Authority - Private Pension is responsible for the supervision and regulation of the private pension system.
- Sosyal Güvenlik Kurumu (Social Security Institution, SGK)
Social Security Institution was established by the Social Security Institution Law No:5502 which was published in the Official Gazette No: 26173 dated 20.06.2006 and brings the Social Insurance Institution, General Directorate of Bağ-kur and General Directorate of Emekli Sandığı whose historical development are summarized above under a single roof in order to transfer five different retirement regimes which are civil servants, contractual paid workers, agricultural paid workers, self-employers and agricultural self-employers into a single retirement regime that will offer equal actuarial rights and obligations. The Social Security Institution is continuing its activities to provide better quality of services for our citizens with the participation of whole staff putting all their energy individually and institutionally.
OYAK (Ordu Yardımlaşma Kurumu/Armed Forces Pension Fund) provides its members with "supplementary retirement benefits" apart from the official retirement fund, T.C.Emekli Sandığı/SSK, to which they are primarily affiliated.
In addition to the retirement benefit, OYAK pays "disability benefits" to the members on duty when they become partially or fully disabled as well as "death benefits" to the heirs of the deceased member if the death occurs during the member's subscription to the Foundation.
OYAK is incorporated as a private entity under its own law subject to Turkish civic and commercial codes. OYAK while fulfilling its legal duties, as set in the Law, also provides its members with social services such as loans, home loans and retirement income systems.
The initial source of OYAK's funds is a compulsory 10 percent levy on the base salary of Turkey's 200,000 serving officers who, together with 25,000 current pensioners, make up OYAK's members.
Some other Turkish private pension funds:
- YAPI ve KREDİ BANKASI A.Ş. Mensupları Yardım ve Emekli Sandığı Vakfı
- AKBANK T.A.Ş. Mensupları Tekaüt Sandığı Vakfı
- TÜRKİYE GARANTİ BANKASI A.Ş. Memur ve Müstahdemleri Emekli ve Yardım Sandığı Vakfı
- TÜRKİYE ODALAR BORSALAR VE BİRLİK PERSONELİ SİGORTA VE EMEKLİ SANDIĞI VAKFI
- TÜRKİYE İŞ BANKASI A.Ş. Mensupları Emekli Sandığı Vakfı
In the United States pension funds include schemes which result in a deferral of income by employees, even if retirement income provision isn't the intent. The United States has $19.1 trillion in retirement and pension assets ($9.1 trillion in private funds, $10 trillion in public funds) as of December 31, 2016. The largest 200 pension funds accounted for $4.540 trillion as of September 30, 2009.
- Global Investment Review
- The Economist Jan 17, 2008 (economist.com)
- "Investment results for the third quarter of fiscal 2015" (PDF). Bloomberg. 2015.
- For examples, see "Local Government Law Library". Retrieved 15 May 2011.
- "The 20 largest pension funds of the globe". www.consultancy.uk. Retrieved 2018-03-11.
- Budget of the United States Government, FY2019, published February 12, 2018. Value as of September 30, 2017 Office of Management and Budget Retrieved February 15, 2018
- Superannuation Statistics, 2017. Value as of June 30, 2017. Retrieved Oct 29, 2017
- "Annual Survey of Large Pension Funds and Public Pension Reserve Funds" (PDF). OECD. 2016-04-21. Retrieved 2016-10-28.
- Budget of the United States Government, FY2018, published February 12, 2018. Value as of September 30, 2017. Office of Management and Budget Retrieved February 15, 2018
- Budget of the United States Government, FY2019, published February 12, 2018. Value as of September 30, 2017. Office of Management and Budget Retrieved February 15, 2018
- Financial Statements of the Thrift Savings Fund December 31, 2016 and 2015. As of December 31, 2016. Thrift Savings Fund. Retrieved February 15, 2018
- "CPP Fund Totals $316.7 Billion at 2017 Fiscal Year-End". www.cppib.com. Retrieved 2018-02-24.
- "Current Investment Fund Values". Calpers.ca.gov. Retrieved 2014-05-10.
- "The world's 300 largest pension funds – year end 2014". Willis Towers Watson.
- "Investments Overview". calstrs.com. Retrieved 2017-06-11.
- FRR 2012 Annual Report
-  Archived November 2, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
- 29 USC § 1002 - Definitions | Title 29 - Labor | U.S. Code | LII / Legal Information Institute. Law.cornell.edu. Retrieved 2013-07-18.
- Federal Reserve Statistical Release, Financial Accounts of the United States, Fourth Quarter 2016, see pp.94-99. Values as of December 31, 2016. Federal Reserve Board of Governors. Reported March 9, 2017. Retrieved May 18, 2017
- P&I Online