The primary task of pensions is to secure an income in retirement. Under this research programme, we will examine pension levels as well as pension benefits of population groups that are central to the improvement of pensions.  

Retirement often spans years and decades and includes different phases as far as income is concerned. During this research programme period, we will conduct individual-level longitudinal studies of changes in pensioners’ income levels and reconduct the questionnaire survey from 2017.  

We will assess livelihood adequacy primarily based on income. We will also review the livelihood of pensioners through consumption and subjective experiences relating to livelihood.  

Under this research programme, we will monitor the Finnish working-age population’s knowledge and views of pension adequacy, sustainability and key principles of the pension system.  

New studies

The more debt, the more dissatisfied a pensioner is with their finances

The amount of debt, the income level and health are strongly linked to financial satisfaction of old-age pensioners. Taking the differences in income and wealth into account, the financial satisfaction of pensioners is weaker in Southern Finland than in Eastern and Northern Finland. This is evident in a recent research article by the Finnish Centre for Pensions.


Pension Barometer:  Two thirds of Finns trust the pension system 

Finnish citizens’ trust in the pension system remains high, according to the Pension Barometer conducted by the Finnish Centre for Pensions. Yet, the confidence has decreased somewhat compared to previous Pension Barometers. Two thirds of the respondents trust the pension system and almost as many think pension assets are managed in a responsible way.


Pensioners’ economic wellbeing relative to rest of population unchanged – poverty most common among people who live alone

An extensive study by the Finnish Centre for Pensions reviews the economic wellbeing of pensioners from 1995 to 2020 via, for example, pensions, income, wealth and perceived economic welfare.  

The most well-off pensioners are the 55–74-year-olds who live in a two-person household. Single, particularly under-55-year-olds, have a clearly smaller-than-average income. 


Perception of income depends on both amount and source of income

In addition to the size of income, the source of income also plays a role in pensioners’ perceived income adequacy. The higher the share of pension and capital income is, the more adequate the income is perceived to be. Income from other social benefits or work weaken the perception of adequacy. This study examines the impact of the amount and source of income on the income perceptions of older Europeans. The research article has been published in the Journal of Aging & Social Policy.  


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Most old-age pensioners find their financial situation to have remained good – one fifth experience long-term financial difficulties

A study by the Finnish Centre for Pensions shows that most pensioners perceive their financial situation to have remained favourable between 2017 and 2020. Yet one fifth of the old-age pensioners experience long-term financial difficulties.


Immigration still the most popular solution to strengthen pension financing; one third would raise pension contributions 

An ample 60 per cent of Finns find employment-based immigration to be a good means to strengthen pension financing.Raising pension contributions is the second most popular solution. An ample one third is in favour of this alternative. Only one quarter of Finns are in favour of pension investors increasing risk taking to increase pension assets. This is revealed by the latest Pension Barometer conducted by the Finnish Centre for Pensions.

If the pension system had to be changed to strengthen pension financing, around 62 per cent of the respondents agree or strongly agree with the alternative of increasing employment-based immigration.  Around 34 per cent agree or strongly agree with increasing pension contributions, while 35 per cent disagree or strongly disagree with this alternative. Fiftyfive per cent of the respondents disagree or strongly disagree with raising the retirement age. A clear majority of the respondents oppose cutting pensions in payment or future pensions.