Too Much Risk to Insure? The Australian (non-) Market for Annuities

Hazel Bateman and John Piggott

in Securing Lifelong Retirement Income

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199594849
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729119 | DOI:
Too Much Risk to Insure? The Australian (non-) Market for Annuities

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While retirement income products have become more important in Australia in recent years, the growth in these has been predominantly in phased withdrawal products which offer no longevity insurance. The life annuity market has virtually disappeared, exposing Australians to much greater uncertainty about their well-being in later life than is necessary. This chapter suggests that both the private market and government intervention will need to be harnessed to address this issue, including better coordination across key policy agencies. While inaction will lead to a long-term prospect of arbitrary and ill-considered government action to meet the realized uninsured outcome, there are signs of a collaborative effort to revitalize the market.

Keywords: Australia; defined contribution; superannuation; voluntary annuitization; compulsory annuitization; annuity markets; phased withdrawal products; public–private partnerships; pensions

Chapter.  8625 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Pensions

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