Tuesday, January 8, 2019


   Canadian viewers of this year’s NFL’s wild card weekend were startled to see a certain commercial in heavy rotation. No, not the Budweiser Clydesdales, or the burger and soft drink ads that are the pricey broadcasts’ usual fare. Rather, this important message was brought to you by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
  True, the timing of the ad is suggestive, appearing as it is in the very week when workers are likely to notice the CPP taking a bigger bite out of their paycheques than ever before. Employer and employee contributions are rising from 4.95 per cent of pensionable earnings to 5.1 per cent, the first of several annual increases between now and 2023.
  But the CPP isn’t a mutual fund: it doesn’t have to persuade Canadians to park their money with it. They have to, by law. No matter how irritated they may be at seeing more and more of their wages going to the CPP, there is no way they can withdraw from the plan, and no prospect of the increases being reversed. So why is the CPPIB paying — or rather, why are we paying — for expensive ads designed to make us feel good about all this “saving” and “investment”?

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