Asset management costs and financial performance of Dutch pension funds in 2011-2014

The costs of Dutch pension funds have increased in the last decades. The costs, as a percentage of assets invested, doubled between 1992-2009. In 2014 total costs equalled 6.3 billion euro, or 19.6% of annual contributions. Asset management is the largest component of costs. Pension funds claim that the costs are necessary for financial performance. Using a unique data-set of Dutch pension funds, the effect of costs on performance is estimated. The hypothesis that higher costs do not lead to better financial results cannot be rejected.

Netspar, Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement, is a thinktank and knowledge network. Netspar is dedicated to promoting a wider understanding of the economic and social implications of pensions, aging and retirement in the Netherlands and Europe.

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