Pensions: a surplus of 3.7 billion euros expected at Agirc-Arrco in 2022

The good financial health of the supplementary scheme could serve as arguments for the unions who want the government to delay the pension reform.

The Agirc-Arrco supplementary pension scheme for executives and private sector employees should still be largely in the green this year, with a “technical result” estimated at 3.7 billion euros, according to an internal document consulted Friday, September 23 by AFP.

The big box is overflowing. According to the scenariocentralpresented recently to its financial commission, Agirc-Arrco expects a surplus “technical” (before financial result) of 3.7 billion euros this year. After the surplus of 2.6 billion already recorded last year, the system managed by the unions and employers therefore continues to reap the benefits of the post-Covid economic recovery.

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Revaluation of pensions

Enough to fuel the next discussions on the revaluation of pensions on November 1, especially since a gain of 1.5 billion is still projected for 2023 and that the “Golden Ruleof having six months of financial reserves over a 15-year horizon would remain valid. At this stage, an increase of at least 4.9% is guaranteed, corresponding essentially to the evolution of wages (4.8%) and a slight catch-up (0.1%) of undervalued inflation in 2021, several union sources told AFP.

Better than the 4% granted this summer by the government on the basic pension service by the Sécu, but less than the increase in prices excluding tobacco, quantified by Agirc-Arrco at 5.3% year-on-year. Compared to the 84 billion euros in benefits budgeted for 2022, this mechanical increase will cause spending to jump by more than 4 billion next year.

Some negotiators nevertheless hope to obtain more to limit the loss of purchasing power of retirees. The subject will be placed on the table of a “Joint Commission” Tuesday afternoon, before a decision by the Board of Directors on October 6. But the social partners have limited room for manoeuvre, because of their “Golden Rule” and principles established before the health crisis, which prevent them in particular from raising pensions beyond the increase in wages. The negotiation of a new agreement in early 2023 will allow them to put everything back on track.

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