A more recent publication of this set of statistics is available: Statistics on Pensioners in Finland

Most pensioners get an earnings-related pension

The total number of pension recipients in Finland at year-end 2017 was 1,586,000. Over half (55%) of them were women (874,000). Three-fifths of all pensioners in Finland got only an earnings-related pension; one-third got also a national pension; and 6 per cent got only a national pension.

The proportion with only a national pension was the same among both Finnish men and women, that is, 6 per cent. By contrast more than two-thirds of men (68%) got only an earnings-related pension and one-quarter got also a national pension while, among women, over half (54%) got only an earnings-related pension and two-fifths had a national pension, as well.

The majority of pensioners in Finland got an old-age pension. At year-end 2017, a total 1,340,000 got an old-age pension. Survivors’ pensions were paid to 270,000 persons, and 206,000 persons got a disability pension. Roughly 12,000 persons got a farm-closure pension or the farmer’s early retirement aid. Circa 7,000 persons got a part-time pension. An individual may get different pension benefits at the same time.

Average Monthly Pension EUR 1,656

The average monthly pension in 2017 in Finland was 1,656 euros, which is 20 euros more than in 2016. The median pension was 1,434 euros per month, or 30 euros more than in 2016. Men got an average monthly pension of 1,874 euros and women 1,476 euros.

The data is per year-end 2017 and based on joint statistics of the Finnish Centre for Pensions and Kela.

The average monthly pension of people who live in Finland depicts the average monthly pension of people who get an earnings-related or a national pension. The review excludes persons who get a part-time pension, a partial old-age pension or only a survivors’ pension. The pensions are presented in gross amounts.

Quality description: Statistics on Pensioners in Finland 2017

The Statistical Yearbook of Pensioners in Finland is published by the Statistics Unit of the Planning Department of the Finnish Centre for Pensions (ETK) in co-operation with the Statistics and Data Warehousing Section of the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela).

The obligation to compile statistics is prescribed to both Kela and the Finnish Centre for Pensions. The Act on the Finnish Centre for Pensions states that one of the responsibilities of the centre is to compile statistics in its field of business. The production of the statistics at the Finnish Centre for Pensions is handled by the Planning Department. The Act on the Social Insurance Institution states that the tasks of Kela include to compile statistics, projections and forecasts.

The production of the statistics is financed jointly by the Finnish Centre for Pensions and Kela.

Relevance of statistical information

The statutory Finnish pension security primarily consists of two statutory pension schemes, the earnings-related pension scheme and the national pension scheme. The Statistical Yearbook of Pensioners in Finland gives a comprehensive overall picture of the pensions paid by the Finnish statutory earnings-related and national pension schemes. It collects the data on pensions received by a person from different parties into an integrated whole. The statistics are almost exhaustive with regards to statutory pension security.

In the private sector, earnings-related pensions are administered by authorized pension providers as well as company and industry-wide pension funds and, in the public sector, mainly by Keva. The Finnish Centre for Pensions functions as a centre for the earnings-related pension scheme and collects the information required for the administration of earnings-related pension matters. The national pension scheme is managed by Kela.

Statutory pension provision also includes pensions from military injuries insurance, motor liability insurance and workers’ compensation insurance, i.e. so-called SOLITA pensions. Of these statistical figures only SOLITA compensations (counted as pensions) for those receiving SOLITA pension in addition to their earnings-related or national pension are included. Persons receiving SOLITA pensions alone are not included in the statistic. The Finnish Motor Insurers’ Centre and the Finnish Workers’ Compensation Center collect the necessary information needed for statistical compilation from the traffic and accident insurance providers.

The Guarantee Pension Act came into force on 1 March 2011. It guarantees a minimum pension for all resi-dents of Finland. Only those receiving a guarantee pension along with an earnings-related or national pension are included in this statistic. Persons receiving guarantee pension alone are not included in the statistic. It is Kela who pays the guarantee pension.

In addition to the statutory pensions, the statistic also includes the voluntary registered supplementary pension security financed by the employer. On the other hand, voluntary non-registered supplementary pension security paid by the employer is not included in the figures of this publication, nor voluntary pension provision paid by the individuals themselves.

The statistic contains data on the numbers, the average pensions and the pension size distributions of persons who received a pension at the end of the year. Additionally, it contains numerical data on new retirees during the year.

The following categorizations are used in the statistic: pension scheme, pension benefit, gender and age of the pension recipient, size of the pension, regional distribution and, for disability pensions, disease category (for disability pensions).

This statistical publication is aimed at decision-makers, planners and researchers in social security and specialists in the pension field. The information is likely also of interest to the media, pensioner organisations and others with an interest in the field. Similarly comprehensive information on Finnish pension recipients is not available elsewhere.

Correctness and accuracy of data

The statistics in the publication are based on the aggregate data of pensions paid by the Social Insurance Institution and the earnings-related pension scheme, and the recipients of these pensions. The statistical data is formed from the joint statistical data warehouse (pension recipients) and the statistical register of new retirees (new retirees).

The data warehouse for joint statistics contains data on all persons who drew a pension from the earnings-related or the national pension scheme on the last day of the year, as well as on the annual pension expenditure. The statistical register of new retirees contains data on all pensions that have started during the year. The Finnish Centre for Pensions maintains these statistical registers together with Kela.

The data warehouse for joint statistics has been assembled from the basic statistical register of the Finnish Centre for Pensions (including old earnings-related pensions of the State), and the Kela benefits and guarantee pensions from the statistical register of the pension benefit database of Kela (including guarantee pensions.) Military injury pensions and earnings-related pensions based on the so-called old rules (excl. old earnings-related pensions of the state) come from the pension database of Kela. Information about pensions according to the Motor Liability Insurance Act and the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Act is sent annually by the Finnish Motor Insurers’ Centre and the Finnish Workers’ Compensation Center.

Statistical register information on new retirees has been collected from the pension contingency register of the Finnish Centre for Pensions and the statistical pension register of Kela.
The data in the basic statistical register of the Finnish Centre for Pensions comes from the pension register of the Finnish Centre for Pensions, where the data is transmitted from the pension providers making the pension decisions. The pension contingency register is managed by Arek Oy, jointly owned by the pension providers and the Finnish Centre for Pensions. The register service department of the Finnish Centre for Pensions is responsible for the content of the pension register. The processing systems include authenticity and logical checks, where the programme requires correction or verification of the data. The error messages may also be comments that do not inhibit the registration of the decision.

Correspondingly, the data in the statistical registers of Kela is based on the pension decisions made in its offices and at the central administration. The data of the joint statistics, gathered from the pension database of Kela, is data forwarded by other pension providers to Kela.

The pension processing systems of Kela have been made primarily for the payment of pensions. Efforts are made to prevent errors from occurring by promoting close co-operation between experts responsible for benefits and statistics.

Flaws detected in the statistics are immediately corrected in the web service. A corrective page is added to printed publications that have not yet been distributed. If the error is substantial, a separate notification is delivered to those who have already received the publication.

Timeliness and promptness of data

The statistic on Finnish pensioners is published once per year. The time of publication is listed in the publication calendar of the Finnish Centre for Pensions at www.etk.fi/statistics and on the web pages of Kela atwww.kela.fi/statistics. The data in the statistical yearbook are final.

Coherence and comparability of data

The statistic has been produced since 1981. From the beginning, it has depicted the numbers and average pensions of individuals receiving pension from the earnings-related and/or national pension schemes. Data on new retirees was added in 2001. Over the years, amendments have been made to both pension schemes and the scope of the statistic has been broadened. The time series of the statistic are primarily comparable.

The comparability of the time series is affected by e.g. the following changes:

  • In 1991 the statistic was completed by adding the money amounts of SOLITA pension to the pensions of individuals receiving earnings-related or national pension. SOLITA pensions are included in average pensions and the size distributions of pensions. They are primary to the earnings-related and national pensions, meaning that the addition complements the pension security of said individuals to a significant degree.
  • In 1996 a new concept was introduced, ‘pension in one’s own right’, that corresponded to the previous concept ‘pensioners in their own right and/or special pensioners’.
  • Since the start of 2001, the basic share of the national pension has no longer been paid. The change did not affect the total number of pensioners, but transferred those receiving both earnings-related pension and national pension to those receiving only earnings-related pension. Removal of the basic share was due to the national pension becoming deductible by the earnings-related pension at the start of 1996, when the national pension was no longer granted without an additional share. Prior to 1 January 1996, national pensions in payment without additional shares were gradually reduced over a period of 5 years.Along with the removal of the basic share, since 1996, national pension paid as housing or care allowances, child increase or front-veterans’ supplement has not been included among national pensions in this statistic.
  • Since 2008, the concept of national pension changed and the housing or care allowance of a pensioner is no longer counted among pensions. They are thus not included in the figures of this statistic or in the pension figures in the other statistics of Kela. The change slightly reduced average pensions.
  • Since 2011, when the Guarantee Pension Act came into force, the cash amount of the guarantee pension was added to the total pension of pensioners receiving earnings-related and/or national pension (not to pension in one’s own right or survivors’ pension.) The change raised the averages of total pensions.

Concepts and definitions have been presented on the statistics page. They have also been laid out in each statistical publication, separately for the statistical year in question. Amendments to the legislation that may possibly affect the statistical figures have been compiled in the appendix to the annual publication.

The statistic uses applicable general standard categorizations, e.g. by region and disease (ICD-10).

Information about earnings-related pensions in the statistic is congruent with the information in the statistic “Pensioners and insured in Finland”, produced by the Finnish Centre for Pensions.

Information on national pensions differ with regards to the concept ‘new retirees’ in the pension statistic of Kela. The statistics of Kela utilize the concept ‘ new pensions’.

Accessibility and transparency of data

The data of the statistics is published on the website and statistical database of the Finnish Centre for Pensions (www.etk.fi/statistics and tilastot.etk.fi) and the statistical database of Kela (www.kela.fi/statistics>Statistical database Kelasto). The annual publication, Statistical yearbook of Pensioners in Finland, is based on this statistics. It is available on the website of the Finnish Centre for Pensions at www.etk.fi/en/publications.

A description of the statistic has been presented on the website of the Finnish Centre for Pensions.
Additional information about the statistic is provided by the statistical service of the Statistical Unit of the Finnish Centre for Pensions, tilastot@etk.fi and the statistical data service of Kela,tilastot@kela.fi.

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