Total institutional pension fund assets in 11 major markets grew 7% in 2004, measured in local currencies, and compared with 2003, and liabilities increased about 10%, said Paul Deane-Williams, senior consultant at Watson Wyatt. Assets in the 11 markets totaled $15.3 trillion for 2004, outpacing the previous high of $13.7 trillion in 2003, according to a report by the firm's Thinking Ahead Group.
Surveyed were Australia, Canada, Germany, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States. Australia's pension fund assets grew 16% in 2004, the highest among the 11 markets, while Switzerland's grew 2%, ranking lowest.
Watson Wyatt's analysis used long government bond discount rates to make global comparisons easier, Mr. Deane-Williams said.