Retirement income policy research and reports

The Commission commissions and conducts research which offers data, analysis and commentary into issues related to New Zealand’s retirement income policies. If you wish to request a report that is not listed here, please .

2013 Review of Retirement Income Policies

Report to Government

The final report to Government was tabled on 12 December 2013. 

Focusing on the Future: Report to Government (PDF 1.98 MB, Dec 2013)

Printed copies may be ordered by emailing us at

Discussion document

The discussion document Focusing on the future is is designed to encourage discussion and debate as part of the 2013 Review of Retirement Income Policies.

Focusing on the Future: A discussion document (PDF 2.55 MB, Oct 2013)

This Microsoft Word document is provided as an accessible version of the pdf and excludes some design elements.

Focusing on the Future: A discussion document (Word 685.77 KB, Oct 2013)

Terms of reference

2013 Review Terms of Reference (PDF 342.96 KB, Sep 2013)

Submissions received

See the submissions received during the 2012 review

History and trends

The history of retirement income in New Zealand to date (PDF 699.68 KB, Mar 2013)

The history of retirement income in New Zealand to 2008 (PDF 433.9 KB, Dec 2012)

Implications of global trends for retirement income policy (PDF 742.23 KB, Mar 2013)

The impact of and issues arising from the global financial crisis (PDF 451.45 KB, Dec 2012)

Longevity trends and their implications for the eligibility for New Zealand Superannuation (PDF 986.15 KB, May 2013)

International comparison

Comparison of the New Zealand and Australian retirement income systems (PDF 846.4 KB, Mar 2013)

Retirement security and financial literacy in New Zealand: policy lessons from abroad (PDF 297.92 KB, Mar 2013)

The financial system post the GFC: roles, regulation and responsibilities (PDF 289.39 KB, Mar 2013)

What’s happening to pension ages in OECD countries (PDF 143 KB, Sep 2013)

Current policies

New Zealand's current retirement income policies (PDF 652.01 KB, May 2013)

Material wellbeing of older New Zealanders (PDF 676.23 KB, Aug 2013)

Contribution of wider policies and programmes (PDF 339.02 KB, Mar 2013)

The influence of an older population structure on public finances (PDF 375.59 KB, Sep 2013)

Overall sustainability of New Zealand's retirement income framework (PDF 345.58 KB, Jan 2013)

Disabled people and provision for retirement (PDF 115.29 KB, Mar 2013)

From the macro to the micro of New Zealand savings (PDF 382.13 KB, Sep 2013)

Tax matters (PDF 199.69 KB, Apr 2013)

N.B. The above paper received just one peer review.

Intergenerational impacts

To save or save not: intergenerational neutrality and the expansion of New Zealand Superannuation (PDF 548.49 KB, May 2013)


The place of KiwiSaver in New Zealand's retirement income framework (PDF 907.13 KB, Mar 2013)

Superannuation and KiwiSaver clauses in collective employment agreements (PDF 233.65 KB, Jul 2013)

New Zealand Superannuation Fund

The role and performance of the New Zealand Superannuation Fund (PDF 209.67 KB, Apr 2013)

Financial literacy in retirement income

The case for financial literacy (PDF 609.12 KB, Apr 2013)


Housing assets (PDF 942.16 KB, Sep 2013)

Note: This paper received just one peer review.


Workforce participation of older workers (PDF 1.02 MB, Mar 2013)


Updated literature review (PDF 239.14 KB, Sep 2013)

Experiences of the workplace: Four women’s stories (PDF 191.38 KB, Sep 2013)

Gender neutrality of superannuation schemes (PDF 304.05 KB, Sep 2013)

Property (Relationships) Amendment Act 2011: Are Separated Women More Disadvantaged Than Men? (PDF 1.11 MB, Sep 2013)

Impact of cultural factors on women's retirement income (PDF 442.72 KB, Dec 2012)

Income and expenditure in retirement

Expenditure in retirement (PDF 374.28 KB, Aug 2013)

Assuring retirement income (PDF 190.45 KB, May 2013)

Managing assets and income in retirement (PDF 322.61 KB, Jan 2013)

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Policy position papers

Each position paper in this series explains one of the objectives of retirement income policy and sets out the Commission’s view. The papers are intended to promote debate, understanding and consensus on sustainable retirement income policies.

Read the policy position papers here (or see below to download and print them).

Income support

Wellbeing in retirement

Encourage personal responsibility, individual choice and control

Longevity risk pooling

Citizenship dividend

Lifetime consumption smoothing

Intergenerational equity (cohort self-funding)

Fiscal restraint and investment


Download the policy position papers

You can download and print the policy position papers.

Income support (PDF 345.75 KB, Jan 2013)

Wellbeing in retirement (PDF 323.85 KB, Jan 2013)

Encouraging personal responsibility, individual choice and control (PDF 315.68 KB, Jan 2013)

Longevity risk pooling (PDF 330.29 KB, Sep 2013)

Citizenship dividend (PDF 312.66 KB, Sep 2013)

Lifetime consumption smoothing (PDF 322.11 KB, Sep 2013)

Intergenerational equity (cohort self-funding) (PDF 329.86 KB, Sep 2013)

Fiscal restraint and investment (PDF 488.49 KB, Jan 2013)

Sustainability (PDF 345.58 KB, Jan 2013)

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Our submissions

2013 Consumers Price Index Advisory Committee

This submission is the Commission's response to a consultation paper issued by Statistics New Zealand seeking the views of the wider community on recommendations made by the 2013 Consumers Price Index (CPI) Advisory Committee in which we support the re-introduction of a price index for superannuitants.

Submission on the Consumer Price Index (PDF 331.73 KB, Apr 2014)

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2010 Review of Retirement Income Policy

On 7 December 2010 the Retirement Commissioner released the 2010 Review of Retirement Income Policy.

Report summary

2010 Review of Retirement Income Policy: Summary (PDF 754.51 KB, Sep 2013)

Full report

2010 Review Report Complete  (PDF 2.59 MB, Sep 2013)

Submissions received

For copies of the submissions received during the 2010 review, please .

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2007 Review of Retirement Income Policy

On 17 December 2007 the Retirement Commissioner released the 2007 Review of Retirement Income Policy.

Full report

2007 Review Report (PDF 1.92 MB, Sep 2013)


2007 Review Summary (PDF 638.87 KB, Sep 2013)


For copies of the submissions received during the 2007 review, please .

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Earlier retirement income policy reviews

Before 2007, reviews of retirement income policy were conducted by different groups, appointed by government, with specific terms of reference.

Periodic Report Group

The Periodic Report Group reported in 1997 and 2003.

PRG Summary Report, 1997 (PDF 586.62 KB, Sep 2013)

PRG Concluding Report, 1997 (PDF 42.5 KB, Sep 2013)

PRG Final Report, Dec 2003 (PDF 353.08 KB, Sep 2013)

Further information on the Periodic Report Group can be found on the New Zealand Treasury website.

Task Force on Private Provision for Retirement

The Task Force on Private Provision for Retirement reported in 1991 and 1992.

The Issues, December 1991 (PDF 322.17 KB, Sep 2013)

An Overview of the Options, August 1992 (PDF 345.3 KB, Sep 2013)

The Options, August 1992 (PDF 1.31 MB, Sep 2013)

The Way Forward - an Outline, December 1992 (PDF 33.32 KB, Sep 2013)

The Way Forward, December 1992 (PDF 381.59 KB, Sep 2013)

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Other papers

Retirement income in New Zealand

Older entrepreneurs (PDF 646.33 KB, Feb 2013)

Mixed messages: the future direction of New Zealand's retirement income policies (PDF 714.36 KB, Sep 2013). Roger Hurnard (2011) (a conference paper sponsored by the Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income).

Conference papers: Retirement Income Policy and Intergenerational Equity Conference, Institute for Governance and Policy Studies (IGPS), Victoria University of Wellington (2010).

The conference papers are also available for purchase in book form at the IGPS Publications webpage.

Review of Retirement Income Policies, Home Equity Release Products in New Zealand: Risks and Opportunities, Report to Retirement Commission for the New Zealand Institute for Research on Ageing (PDF 534.69 KB, Feb 2013). Judith Davey (2007).

The Policy Implications of Decumulation in Retirement in New Zealand (PDF 440.77 KB, Feb 2013). A background paper setting out the issues prepared for the Retirement Commission. Susan St John (2006).

Home Equity Release Schemes in New Zealand: Consumer Perspectives, Final Report on Research for the Retirement Commission and the Office for Senior Citizens (PDF 575.41 KB, Feb 2013). Judith Davey & Virginia Wilton (2006).

Retirement income internationally

Financial wellbeing: Concerns and choices among older Australians. June 2012, Higgins, T. and S. Roberts, National Seniors Productive Ageing Centre (PDF, 2.16 MB)

Life after work? Older entrepreneurship in London – Motivations and Barriers. Jan 2012

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