EconomyRetirement savings plans deemed too opaque

Retirement savings plans deemed too opaque


The retirement savings plan (PER) appeared at the end of 2019 to replace the former Madelin, Perco, Perp and Préfon, considered too complex. The objective: to encourage the French to save for the long term. Presented as more flexible and readable, this new product is available in three versions, individual, collective and compulsory collective, in order to cover all the situations previously covered. Although the purpose remains above all to build up a nest egg for your old age by withdrawing the money saved at this time in the form of capital or an annuity, various exceptions allow it to be released early in the event of a serious problem (over-indebtedness, disability , death, etc.) or to buy your main residence.

On paper, the PER therefore seems like a bargain. But, in practice, the results are more nuanced, as the president of the Financial Sector Advisory Committee (CCSF) deplored in an assessment report delivered at the end of July 2021, at the request of the Ministry of the Economy.

Too much expense, not enough information

First criticism: the high cost of management fees. Of the 36 individual contracts examined between December 2020 and March 2021, the latter amounted to 2.75% on average for a support invested 100% in units of account, knowing that some contracts posted up to 4.8 % of management fees. We must add the fees levied on payments (3.18% on average) and arbitration commissions (0.72%). An accumulation of costs which “weighs on the yield of contracts all the more so in an environment of low interest rates”, according to the president’s report.

However, communication on this subject is far from satisfactory, according to this study, which denounces “very fragmented information”, especially on the websites of many establishments. The result: comparing offers is complicated and you often have to contact an advisor to obtain the necessary details. And even once the PER has been taken out, savers do not have “the sum of the total annual management fees – insurance + management company – on their information statement”.

However, the report notes the appearance of new simplified digital offers offering “low costs and limited in number and complete information accessible via the Internet”. The emergence of stronger competition would therefore be welcome.



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