Welcome to the latest edition of This Week in Pensions! As always, we have gathered the best stories about pensions and retirement security from the previous week. This is the news you need to know in the fight for a secure retirement.

Here are this week’s top stories:

  • Kansas raid on pensions only worsens problem by Bailey Childers and Annie McKay: NPPC’s Executive Director and the Executive Director of the Kansas Center for Economic Growth write in the Kansas City Star that Governor Sam Brownback’s decision to withhold an almost $100 million contribution to Kansas’ public pensions will only worsen the economic and fiscal problems the state is facing. Kansans need to reject the right-wing tax policy that has proven so damaging to the state’s economy.
  • Working for a fair economy, fair deal by Randi Weingarten: the president of the American Federation of Teachers warns of the risks public pensions face when they invest in hedge funds. As she says, “We take the obligation to protect pensions seriously, and that includes stopping bad actors who, without safeguards, would extract billions in fees, leaving taxpayers and workers on the hook.”
  • NASRA: States pay more of actuarially determined contributions in fiscal 2014 by Meaghan Kilroy: a recent report by the National Association of State Retirement Administrators finds that, in 2014, public pension funds received 93 percent of their actuarially determined contributions. This is a positive move for improving the funded status of public pensions nationwide.
  • Delayed retirement is both a symptom and a cause of a troubled economy by Michael Molinski: workers in the United States are waiting longer to retire, which has potentially dire consequences for the American economy. In large part, this delayed retirement is due to the inadequacy of retirement savings with the decline in defined benefit pensions and the rise of inadequate 401(k)s.
  • Public Pension Funds Perform Better When They Keep Politics at Bay by Simon Wong: Professor Simon Wong details the success some public pensions have had at using strong governance and deft, pre-emptive management to keep political pressure away from pension fund decisions.

Also this week, don’t miss our coverage of the Republican National Convention on the Defined Benefit blog. And check back next week for the latest edition of This Week in Pensions!