Actuarial Outpost

Actuarial Outpost (
-   Pension - Social Security (
-   -   AAA and SOA censor research and disband voice of pension finance (

Jeremy Gold 08-03-2016 11:40 AM

AAA and SOA censor research and disband voice of pension finance


Originally Posted by P&I
The American Academy of Actuaries and the Society of Actuaries Monday abruptly disbanded its longtime joint Pension Finance Task Force, objecting to a task force paper challenging the standard actuarial practice of valuing public pension plan liabilities.

“This paper (is) being censored by the AAA” and SOA, said Edward Bartholomew, who was a member of the former task force, in an interview. “They didn’t want it to get out.”

Others who were members of the task force also said in interviews the two actuarial groups are trying to suppress publication of the paper.

A joint memorandum dated Monday announced the disbanding of the task force to its members.

The memo was jointly written by Thomas F. Wildsmith IV, president of the Washington-based academy and president and senior manager of public policy at Aetna Inc., Washington, and Craig W. Reynolds, president of the Schaumburg, Ill.-based society and principal and consulting actuary at Milliman Inc., Seattle.

campbell 08-03-2016 11:59 AM

So we can get the actuaries to do this:

which is not particularly actuarial,

but block a paper written about actual actuarial concerns

way to go.

campbell 08-03-2016 12:02 PM

Following Ed Bartholomew's tweet with a link to a dropbox doc:

I will point out this bit:


As a work product of the joint PFTF, the paper, Financial Economics Principles Applied to Public Pension Plans, was – like the predecessor paper 10 years ago – intended to be published by the Academy and the SOA as a jointly owned and copyrighted paper. It appears this is no longer feasible, and neither the SOA nor the Academy will be publishing the paper or endorsing it. Because the paper was the work of the joint Task Force, we do not think it would be appropriate for members of the Task Force, as individuals, to take the existing paper and simply publish it somewhere else. We recognize that some of the individuals who have been on the PFTF have their own personal ideas and views on these topics, and the Academy and the SOA encourage those individuals to express those ideas in other forums. But they cannot use the existing paper, with the particular expressions of ideas as developed by the Task Force, as the vehicle to do so.
Even if they were the authors of the paper, as individuals.

SamTheOlympicEagle 08-03-2016 12:02 PM


Originally Posted by campbell (Post 8635548)
So we can get the actuaries to do this:

which is not particularly actuarial,

but block a paper written about actual actuarial concerns

way to go.

How are we gonna get the politicians to listen to us about bathroom bills if we're antagonizing them over their pension policies?

campbell 08-03-2016 12:04 PM

From the P&I story:


Current public plan practice uses the long-term investment return of assets to value liabilities. The paper “challenged” that practice, said Mr. Bartholomew, a Washington-based independent pension consultant and former chief financial officer of the Inter American Development Bank, Washington, who helped oversee its more than $3 billion defined benefit pension plan.

“The issue came to a head with our attempt to get the paper published,” Mr. Bartholomew said.

When the academy and SOA leadership made their objections to the paper known, the authors offered to remove the task force label and have the society publish the paper under co-authors’ names only, while having side-by-side critiques written by actuaries opposed to its conclusions, members of the former task force said. But the academy and society refused to agree, the members said.

campbell 08-03-2016 12:06 PM

I cannot say I'm surprised, and I will use the word "pathetic" again.

Even though that word supposedly triggers people to go seek their safe spaces.

Not even a point-counterpoint?!


bdschobel 08-03-2016 12:13 PM

Astoundingly pathetic. The actuarial profession now -- SOA and AAA working together, for a change -- turn their back on science while jumping into the deep end on bathroom usage. How much lower can we go? Maybe we need to choose our leaders even more carefully? :)


Dan Moore 08-03-2016 12:14 PM

I haven't gotten the joint memo yet. It appears the Academy & SOA have been scooped by P&I on this story.

SamTheOlympicEagle 08-03-2016 12:15 PM

News travels fast. A buddy of mine (non-actuary) who works for an investment firm sent me this email:


Are there going to be cage matches at your next convention?

bdschobel 08-03-2016 12:17 PM

I hope that someone in the independent news media (is there such a thing?) juxtaposes this disgraceful retreat from sound scientific inquiry with the charge into correct bathroom usage. Our profession could not possibly look sillier, unless we endorsed Donald Trump for president. Maybe that's next? What a race to the bottom this is.


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:51 AM.

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Page generated in 0.24536 seconds with 9 queries