December 12, 2017, 10:50 am
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Pension hike shaves SSS net

The Social Security System’s (SSS) net income fell by 56.58 percent as of end-September as the pension fund’s expenses increased from the same period in 2016 due to the implementation of the pension hike and adjustments early this year.

The agency’s profit stood at P11.91 billion as of end-September, lower than the P27.43 billion recorded in the first nine months of 2016.

Total expenditures for the nine-month period amounted to P134.26 billion, 28.43 percent higher than the P104.54 billion recorded in the same period a year ago.

Specifically, benefit payments amounted to P127.78 billion as of the end of the third quarter of 2017, a 30.31 percent increase from P98.06 billion in the same period in 2016.

“The increase in benefit payouts was higher due to the release of the P1,000 additional benefit amounting to P24.03 billion from January to October 2017 and the third tranche of pension adjustments arising from the unlumping of 1985 to 1989 contributions amounting to P72.43 million,” said Emmanuel Dooc, SSS president and chief executive officer.

The third tranche of pension adjustments for retirees, death and disability pensioners prior to May 24,1997 or the implementation of the Republic Act (RA) 8282, or the Social Security Law of 1997, was credited to accounts of qualified pensioners on June 29, 2017.

The first and second tranche of pension adjustments for retirees, death and disability pensioners, after the implementation of RA 8282, were already released last year.

Broken down, payments for retirement benefit jumped 26.75 percent to P73.65 billion; followed by death benefit payouts with a 43.51 percent increase to P40.17 billion; and disability benefit payments with a 9.24 percent hike to P4.52 billion.

Disability, funeral, and sickness benefit expenditures also rose by 42.8 percent to P4.64 billion; 6.09 percent to P2.85 billion; and 8.47 percent to P1.95 billion, respectively.

Medical and rehabilitation services, on the other hand, posted a 13.47 percent and 20.36 percent drop, to P9.7 million and P1.1 million, respectively.

SSS operating expenses, likewise, slightly declined by 0.05 percent to P6.48 billion during the nine-month period.

Meanwhile, SSS total revenues as of end-September 2017 grew 10.72 percent to P146.17 billion, from P131.97 billion in the same period last year.

Members’ contributions, which represent 81.8 percent of total revenues, amounted to P119.5 billion, up by 11.31 percent from P107.36 billion in 2016.

“The increase in our contribution was due to the aggressive contribution collection drive of SSS, like our recently-launched Run After Contribution Evaders and linkages with various professional sectors,” Dooc said.

He said component-wise, collections from the employed sector registered the biggest amount at P103.1 billion, followed by voluntary paying members at P10.98 billion, and self-employed at P5.42 billion.

Investment and other income for the nine-month period of 2017, which represents 18.2 percent of total revenues, was 8.16 percent higher, from P24.61 billion to P26.62 billion.

Dooc also said the pension fund’s financial position remained stable with total assets of P511.72 billion, up by 7.4 percent from P476.40 billion, due to the increase in investments and cash equivalents.

The SSS investment reserve fund as of end-September 2017 stood at P490.32 billion, 5.6 percent higher than the P464.42 billion recorded at the end of 2016.
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