CHICAGO, Sept. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Morningstar, Inc. (NASDAQ: MORN), a leading provider of independent investment research, today published the 2013 edition of its research report, "The State of State Pension Plans," which analyzed current data for pension plans administered by all 50 states. New this year, Morningstar also included an analysis of the pension plan administered by the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Morningstar's municipal credit analysts found that based on two key funding metrics, the state of Wisconsin had the strongest-funded state pension plan system while Illinois had the weakest among all 50 states, for the second year in a row. However, Puerto Rico ranked the weakest among all the pension systems evaluated by Morningstar.
Morningstar's pension plan analysis focused on two key metrics:
"Pension plans are inherently challenging to understand because of their complexity, weak disclosure requirements, and their sheer number. In addition, pension accounting is filled with assumptions, which leads to a lot of uncertainty. During the last few years, there has been a lot of negative attention focused on pensions, but new standards approved by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board could spark some significant changes," Rachel Barkley, municipal credit analyst for Morningstar, said. "We've seen the funded levels of state pension plans continue to decline during the last year, albeit modestly, and the bankruptcy filings of San Bernardino, Calif. and Detroit, Mich. may have significant effects on the national level.
"On the upside, recent data indicate that long-term investment returns are generally in line with assumptions used by most pension plans. Additionally, in recent years most states have implemented some level of pension reforms."
Additional key conclusions from Morningstar's review of state pension plan systems include:
Morningstar's state pensions research report also includes a discussion of trends, pension reform, recent bankruptcies, shortcomings in disclosure and transparency, and federal legislation. Morningstar analysts also compiled aggregate pension data by state, including assets, funded ratio, and UAAL per capita, along with individual pension plan data by state.
An excerpt of "The State of State Pension Plans 2013" is available at http://global.morningstar.com/Pensions2013. For a video and article highlighting this year's research findings, please visit http://www.morningstar.com/goto/StatePension. For more information about Morningstar's analysis of government pension plans, the company's "State and Local Pensions 101" overview is available at http://global.morningstar.com/pensions101.
Morningstar plans to update its research on state pension plans annually. Last year, the company launched analyst research on 100 municipal obligors and bond reports for approximately 1 million municipal bonds. More information about Morningstar's municipal bond research is available at http://global.morningstar.com/muniresearch.
About Morningstar, Inc.
Morningstar, Inc. is a leading provider of independent investment research in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. The company offers an extensive line of products and services for individuals, financial advisors, and institutions. Morningstar provides data on approximately 433,000 investment offerings, including stocks, mutual funds, and similar vehicles, along with real-time global market data on nearly 10 million equities, indexes, futures, options, commodities, and precious metals, in addition to foreign exchange and Treasury markets. Morningstar also offers investment management services through its registered investment advisor subsidiaries and has more than $166 billion in assets under advisement and management as of June 30, 2013. The company has operations in 27 countries.
©2013 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Nadine Youssef, +1 312 696-6601 or firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Morningstar, Inc.
|Team Germany Claims Victory for Second Year in a Row in the 2013 BMO Nations' Cup at Spruce Meadows ()|
|RBC named "Best Private Bank in Canada" by Global Private Banking Awards for second year in a row (2013/10/30)|
|NeoStem Ranked the Number One Fastest Growing Company in the Tri-State Region on Deloitte's 2013 Technology Fast 500 for the Second Year in a Row (2013/11/13)|
|ServiceSource Named to Prestigious Deloitte Technology Fast 500 List for the Second Year in a Row (2013/11/13)|
|CN recognized as a transportation industry sustainability leader in being named to Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI) for second year in a row ()|
|CN recognized as a transportation industry sustainability leader in being named to Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI) for second year in a row (2013/9/12)|
|Regeneron Named Top Employer in the Global Biopharmaceutical Industry for the Second Year in a Row (2013/10/24)|
|For The Second Year In A Row, ANSYS Simulation Drives Four Out Of The Top Six F1 Racing Teams To Victory (2013/12/3)|
|Morningstar Evaluates Fiscal Health of 25 City Pension Plans; Finds Washington, D.C. the Strongest-Funded City Pension Plan and Chicago the Weakest (2013/11/12)|
|Gray Firm Files FINRA Claim Concerning UBS Puerto Rico Fund (2013/10/3)|
|Start Premium Trial||Register For Free|
|P||F||Fund Financial Data (13,000+ funds)|
|P||F||Stock Financial Data (7,000+ stocks)|
|P||F||Stock and Fund Screeners (basic)|
|P||F||Investing Articles and Market Commentary|
|P||F||Articles Archive (>30 days)|
|P||F||Discuss (dozens of stock, fund, bond, and general bulletin boards)|
|P||F||Portfolio Manager (basic)|
|P||F||Morningstar Investment Classroom|
|P||F||Access Your Portfolio Anytime, Anywhere via Your Mobile Device|
|P||Morningstar Fund Analyst Reports (full research on 1,700 funds, ETFs, and CEFs)|
|P||Morningstar Stock Analyst Reports (full research on more than 1,100 stocks)|
|P||Portfolio Manager (advanced with 10 X-Ray analyses, including recommendations)|
|P||Portfolio Monitor (monthly and on-demand personalized portfolio statements)|
|P||Morningstar Proprietary Stock Information (stock star ratings, buy/sell prices, economic moat ratings, and more)|
|P||Morningstar 5-Star Stock and Fund Favorites & Red Flags eNewsletters|
|P||Premium Stock and Fund Screeners (advanced with nearly infinite ways to find the best securities for you)|
|P||Discounts on Morningstar newsletters, books, seminars, and more|
Access these features and more when you sign up for Free Membership.
Join Morningstar today. It's Free.
Access these features and more when you sign up for Premium Membership.
Start your free 14-day trial today online
Your subscription may be tax deductible. Please contact your tax advisor.