Économie et Statistique n° 417-418 - Household Assets: Recent Developments
Financial Saving for Retirement: Ownership Behaviour Patterns and Amounts Invested
Saving for retirement increased slightly in France in the past decade, a trend to which recent pension-system reforms may give further momentum in the years ahead. It is therefore important to better understand the determinants of household behaviour in regard to saving and to the size of investments for retirement. The 2004 Household Assets Survey gives a picture of the situation before the August 2003 pension reform: it covers instruments held by households in anticipation of retirement and the share of such assets in their total financial portfolios. The four long-term saving vehicles studied are those for which 2004 Household Assets Survey respondents give retirement planning as one of the reasons for ownership: the Plan d'Épargne Populaire (PEP), annuity plans, securities, and retirement saving instruments proper. Ownership of long-term saving products is chiefly determined by the household’s financial resources. By contrast, the decision to save for retirement and the ratio of sums invested to total financial assets tend to be influenced by the age of the household reference person. Occupational status also plays an important role in the ownership of long-term assets for retirement.