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The Third Rail: Confronting Our Pension Failures Hardcover – Oct 29 2013


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Signal (Oct. 29 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0771046634
  • ISBN-13: 978-0771046636
  • Product Dimensions: 14.6 x 2 x 21.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #62,284 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

       • "Possibly clearer than any book on pensions thus far.... This is a powerful message for Canada's ministers and their officials to contemplate.... The book should be required reading for our political leaders before they meet."--Globe and Mail 

   • "Leech and McNish's book will be a helpful road map for both policy makers and the public at large."--Literary Review of Canada 

   • "The authors not only describe the causes of the impending crisis and its potential consequences, they offer solutions to avert the disaster."--Winnipeg Free Press


From the Trade Paperback edition.

About the Author

Before becoming president and CEO of the OTPP in 2007, JIM LEECH was president and CEO of Unicorp Canada Corporation, one of Canada's first public merchant banks, and Union Energy Inc., then one of North America's largest integrated energy and pipeline companies. During the 1990s, he guided two start-up technology companies -- DisysCorporation and Kasten Chase Applied Research - to the revenue generation stage. Leech serves on the boards of Toronto General and Western Hospital Foundation, the MasterCard Foundation and was a founding director of Right To Play International. He also chairs the advisory board of the Queen's School of Business and is on the advisory board for The Learning Partnership, the advisory council for the Toronto Region Board of Trade and the Toronto Financial Services Leadership Council. In 2012, Leech was awarded the Queen's Diamond Jubilee medal in recognition of his work with the True Patriot Love Foundation.

JACQUIE McNISH is a senior writer with the Globe and Mail and regular host on BNN, Canada's business news network. She is the winner of five National Newspaper Awards and the author of two bestselling books.

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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By H.Barca on Jan. 14 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I hope that this book is the first of many. It addresses the pension crisis from a Canadian perspective, a rare find. It offers solutions in simple language that is technical enough to make its point to the lay person. The best read on a topic all-too often ignored by our elected politicians, until the runaway train of pension promises and short-term political demagogy hits the "third rail".
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Format: Hardcover
I work in the group retirement industry and enjoy reading books on financial planning and planning for retirement ... so this book caught my eye and I found it interesting.

This book provides information about Canadian retirement plans available including Canada/Quebec Pension Plan (C/QPP), Old Age Security (OAS), Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) and workplace savings plans (defined benefit plans and defined contribution plans). The authors, Leech and McNish, provide their opinions on how the retirement landscape should be improved because the majority of Canadians aren't saving enough to fund their retirements.

It was interesting to read the three case studies of pensions plans that were failing and managed to turn themselves around:

* New Brunswick
* Rhode Island
* The Netherlands

While I think the authors did a good job in analyzing the current situation and providing recommendations, I think they should have also placed emphasis on the responsibility of individual Canadians to save more.

Part of my job is to talk with people about saving for retirement. There are many who are on track and will be able to maintain their lifestyles in retirement. But there are many more who aren't. In a lot of cases, they assume they are saving enough so it's a bit of a shock for them when I show them that they aren't but then I help them get on track. I know that some can't afford to save more so I'm glad they are doing what they can. But there are others who live in la-la-land. For example, I was talking with a young guy (about 25-years-old) a couple weeks ago.
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Format: Hardcover
It is a well written narrative of the troubles - large deficits in meeting pension obligations, experienced by pension plans across a few cities in North America. As good narratives go, it provides human and circumstantial contexts of the issues, the resulting actions (imprudent in case of Central Falls), and a description of what will/should be the new normal for pension plans. The resulting actions, with the exception of Central Falls, were solutions that were drawn by studying the Dutch model.

In presenting the Dutch model the authors provide an adequate amount of history. They also describe the changes that this benchmark Dutch model is going through.

In summary, this book includes a good blend of scientific facts and the human stories that make for an engaging read.

My personal generalization from reading the book: The narrative provides a reminder that when faced with challenging circumstances one must resist the temptation to maintain status quo.
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Format: Hardcover
EXCELLENT book! A "Must Read" for individuals, politicians, organizations, corporations, unions - anyone and everyone who hopes to have a pension when they retire. A pension crisis is coming and this book tells three (true) stories about people in three different places in the world that started talking/facing/understanding and acting on pension issues (i.e. touched the third rail) in order to make things right. A VERY readable book about courageous people making tough decisions and working hard to make pensions sustainable. Give your family and friends and your member of Parliament this book for Christmas.
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By Michel on Nov. 14 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fournit une bonne description générale de la situation des régimes de pension autant au Canada qu'à l'étranger; un avertissement pour les responsables de régimes de retraite au Québec. Avec près de 100 milliards de déficits accumulés, il est clair que nous allons goûter la médecine que d'autres ont déjà dû avaler, et pas toujours volontairement.
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By Jimzee on Nov. 30 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Every Canadian who is dreaming of retiring comfortable with their Defined Benefit Pension plan needs to have a go at this book. Government employees are welll advise to spend one eveing cuddled up next to the winter fire place and read these contents because this could happen to them and others in a defined benefit pension plan.
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Format: Hardcover
Intelligent. Informative. Interesting. Important.
This book masterfully tackles the no-touch topic of Pensions and is creatively presented in a story format.
I recommend it to anyone and everyone.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a topic that will impact almost all Canadians, many directly and to a large degree. To date, most people have had their heads firmly planted in the sand, reading this book would be a great first step towards pulling them out.
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