Total contributions to the $92.3 billion Wisconsin Retirement System, Madison, will rise to an estimated $1.85 billion in calendar year 2014, a 5.6% increase from this year, as a result of rate boosts for participating employers and employees, according to projections from Bob Willett, chief financial officer, state Department of Employee Trust Funds.
Total estimated employer contributions will rise to $952 million, up 4.9%, while total estimated employee contributions will rise to $902 million, up 6.3%.
The “increase is primarily due to the lingering effects of 2008's global economic meltdown,” according to a DETF statement, adding “2014 is the last year that the investment declines will affect WRS contribution rates.” The $85.4 billion “core trust fund investment results are distributed (smoothed) over five years to soften the impact of year-to-year volatility of investments.”
The WRS assets are overseen by the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, Madison, whose assets total $100.3 billion.
The DETF, which administers the WRS benefit programs, approved the contribution increases, which were recommended by Gabriel Roeder Smith & Co., WRS' actuarial consulting firm.