Pension break rolls on after $400M fund ‘raid’

| 24/12/2020 | 43 Comments

(CNS): The Cayman Islands Government is extending the freeze on mandatory pension payments until June next year to help ease the strain for employers and workers, as they continue to navigate the difficulties of the COVID-19 economy. Pension holders can no longer withdraw funds from their accounts, but officials revealed this week that more than CI$440 million was taken out during the emergency access.

While the CIG has not revealed how much was sent overseas, the cash injection has kept the domestic economy afloat. Government is now hoping that by stretching the pension payments holiday by another six months, the economy will continue its rebound. Both employers and employees will not be required to pay into pension plans until 30 June 2021.

The window of opportunity to take money out saw a stampede of applications as virtually all workers raided their own funds. That window closed at the end of October but over the six month period when it was open 46,888 applications were made and more than 36,000 of them were approved.

According to the latest figures, CI$443,464,491.28 was paid out by pension funds.


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Comments (43)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    You cannot spend it twice.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I love how people are acting like the government is somehow helping by allowing people access to their own money. Pathetic.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I understood the need to withdraw our pensions but what you did with it is another story.

    For anyone running to NAU, a year or more down the road, because they claim they can’t sustain themeselves and their families, such people should be made to provide evidence of what they did with their pension money.

    I no atleast 5 persons who wasted theirs in its entirety on BS.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Not a raid, more of an organized liberation of our own money. I’d take it all out if I could. It’s all still intact, just redeployed, and finally earning. I’ve seen more growth and performance self directing in a few months than my pension has offered in the last 20 years, paying enormous fees to administrators that are simply checking old dogma asset allocation models and then subscribing to multi-advisor funds (which apply another layer of fees).

    • Anonymous says:

      That was an unintended benefit but was the best positive to the pension withdrawal allowance…..financially smart folks could access their funds and invest them in far more lucrative scenarios. Unfortunately, your behavior was probably that of the minority. Many people, with no change to their income, have spent their “windfall” on non-necessities and will still be yelling that the Government needs to provide them with assistance.

      Some people did actually use it to survive while no income was/is coming in. This was the intended purpose and I’m glad it was available for them.

  5. Gentle Reminder says:

    Now they broke so back to the old reliable Crime! And stealing people S#@! When is this rinky dink government going to stop this enormous foreign theft ring packing containers of looted goods and items and shipping them back home to friends and family ? poor Cayman getting fleece in every direction and still we import our demise and foreign culprits ?

  6. Anonymous says:

    usual short sighted nonsense from no-plan-ppm.

  7. Vera says:

    Maybe its worth Government considering removing some of the burden from the private sector for a while and legislate to allow a public sector pensions withdrawal and pension holiday for a while to help the economy and its next needed cash injection.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Those pension funds provided pathetic returns unless you are able to do self directed investment VOO – S&P500. We should be able to withdraw the whole thing considering Cayman didn’t provide stimulus cheques.
    Those pension funds are as big shysters as getting ripped off on a car repair by GT Automotive. Need the money during this difficult time. Thank you

  9. Anonymous says:

    Let us “raid” the rest of our pensions!

    • Anonymous says:

      I needed the pension money to pay for ac repairs to my car at Trac that denied the warranty. Cayman kind and Merry Christmas – Not.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Let us give thanks to all of those men and women who sacrificed their jobs, their businesses and in some cases their homes in order to give us our safety bubble. Let’s us give thanks to all of those who destroyed their retirements to keep business going in Cayman while we protected our bubble. I know I’ve done very well this year and kept my job, actually made more money too. Some of my competitors actually didn’t make it. Oh well, more for me. I tip my hat to all of you who have sacrificed everything you ever worked for so that I can be mask free. Cheers.

    • Anonymous says:

      Pretty sure this is flying over a few heads.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are so right, and for all of that we are so very thankful❤️

      Would hate to be living in a COVID-infested, shithole banana republic this blessed Christmas Day 2020🙏🏼.

      Thank you and thanks to you, and while you’re at it, you can also take your “land of the free” attitude wherever your trails may lead you in the future.

      • Anonymous says:

        Wonderful, after tripping the lights fantastic this new years eve, maybe make a news years resolution to donate everything you own to those who have saved you from covid with their financial futures.

  11. Say it like it is says:

    There’s a large section of the population whose pension and benefits will be totally unaffected by Covid, guess who?. In the meantime we will have thousands retiring down the line who will not have enough to live on, let alone pay their medical bills.

  12. Anonymous says:


  13. Anonymous says:

    what a disaster …what was the name of the fool mla that came up with this pathetic idea …ahh austin DAS harris should be considered a hero

  14. Anonymous says:

    I want the rest of my money! Please open the withdrawal window again

  15. Anonymous says:

    Pension funds should be available when someone loss their jobs as well. Why have $60,000 or more in your pension fund when you cant pay your mortgage and outstanding bills? There should be somewhere to have access to these funds to keep a roof over your head, instead of making the Bank coming to take over or we depending on hand out from our Government. Come on Alden and everyone we put to represent us..

    • Anonymous says:

      there is, if you are in early retirement age bracket or have additional voluntary contributions!

    • Anonymous says:

      Personal responsibility goes a long way. Everyone should have a rainy-day fund that can hold them over for several months. Less spending on Miami shopping trips until it builds up. I started saving from the time I was a child and really started saving when I got my first job in high school.

  16. Anonymous says:

    a “stampeded”? Too much eggnog?

    CNS: Not enough. Soon to be rectified.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the continued pay cut Alden…oink oink

  18. Anonymous says:

    The fact that almost the entire workforce had need of thousands and thousands of dollars tells you what you need to know about this place. Clearly, we can’t afford proper lives.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well MLA’s seem to be doing just fine so quit your complaining.

    • Anonymous says:

      It doesn’t tell you any such thing. I didn’t “need” my pension withdrawal, but I wanted control over my own money. I took it out, invest part in a significant home improvement project that is as much an investment as my pension account. I also replaced all my 15-year-old kitchen appliances with more energy-efficient versions. And I still have more than half-left to reinvest. With many, including Warren Buffet now predicting a stock market crash within two years, I’d rather not have all my eggs in one basket.

      • Anonymous says:

        Okay, original poster here. I used the money to furnish my starter home – did I need that money, or just choose to spend it? What hair are you splitting here? If you took out the money to do something, you needed the money. It sounds like you already had money, hence you feel better about your withdrawal. Others of us saw it as manna from heaven that we’d been praying for without realising it. I’d be sleeping on the floor without it. That’s not okay.

        • Anonymous says:

          Then you bought a home you couldn’t afford. Starter home or mansion is irrelevant. Being able to buy basic furniture (like a bed!) is part of affording a home. If that wasn’t doable without pension money, you should have delayed purchasing and continued saving. Owning a home is a privilege NOT a right.

          Now that you have a home, save every penny that you can because unexpected costs come up all the time and some need immediate attention.

      • BeaumontZodecloun says:

        Myself as well. I took what remain of my ravaged pension account and invested it. Now, it’s all on me to make or break. I’m good with that.

        • Anonymous says:

          Same with me. I put it to work and am up 40% since July with active monitoring and moderate risk. I don’t expect to make this type of return all of the time but like BeaumontZodecloun I am fine with managing this risk myself.

    • CaymanKind died in the 90s says:

      Thankfully I cashed out years ago. And while 2020 was a trying year, I am happy to have left.

      The govt here offered up to 60% guaranteed salaries and very generous grants. Meanwhile, Cayman is dumping its pension value as a result of ill preparation, a crippled economy, and an insane cost of living. But sure you are COVID free…

      And I see you are stirring problems with the U.S.A now. Keep that up and the democrats will return focus on these islands as they did when Obama was in office.

      • Anonymous says:

        Usually I would defend Cayman and say something rude…but you’re right…we really are a banana republic…we send 18 year olds to jail but ground woman beating mla’s.

      • MR says:

        You know anywhere in the world without a crippled economy at the moment?

        Covid free is the way to be.

        • Anonymous says:

          Most of the developed countries still have a functional economy. Most of the people in the developed world are Covid free. You should know this.

      • Anonymous says:

        …”And I see you are stirring problems with the U.S.A now. Keep that up and the democrats will return focus on these islands as they did when Obama was in office”.

        That would be a GOOD THING. Unless you want to continue the corruption here.

      • BeaumontZodecloun says:

        If you have been truly paying attention, you’d conclude that a U.S. citizen broke the law and got a light sentence. Hopefully that will be as life-changing for her as it was for me when I was incarcerated for 60 days at age 22.

        Much of the U.S. watches too much t.v. and believes the myths about money laundering in what is often errantly called “The Caymans”. Truth is that there are very few places in the world that have come into compliance nearly as completely as us. The new “offshore” is in middle America.

    • Anonymous says:

      They didn’t “have need”, they had “want” for shiny stuff .

      • Anonymous says:

        I doubled up two or three times I ain’t telling no lies. 5, 4, 3, 2 1 that money my life in diamonds who knew💎

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