Trusteed pension funds are one of the most important sources of retirement income for Canadians. They have also been one of the fastest-growing sectors of the Canadian financial market. Trusteed pension funds play an important role in capital markets, channelling billions of dollars of their members' contributions into investments in financial and real assets.
This article presents an overview of the trusteed pension funds sector. It provides a context for this overview by briefly presenting other sources of retirement income in Canada. It then examines the sources of the sector's rapid growth, including regulatory developments that have affected it, namely the increase in allowable foreign content and the adoption of the prudent person rule. Finally, it looks at the evolution of the sector's asset mix and how the sector interacts with capital markets.