Critics assert that the number of actuarial cost methods
currently permitted and the resulting variation in the financial statement effects of the pension commitment reduces comparability across governments.
Moreover, it is hard to argue that the use of the other actuarial cost methods
is unsuitable for accounting and financial reporting purposes in light of years of experience under the current standards, and given the fact that all of the accepted actuarial cost methods
ultimately produce the same result (i.
Actuaries use a number of different actuarial cost methods
, which can be relatively complex mathematically.
Actuarial cost method
--One of the following actuarial cost methods
should be used: entry age, frozen entry age, attained age, frozen attained age, projected unit credit, (10) or aggregate, as described in paragraph 41, Section B.
The actuarial cost methods
and associated actuarial functions are calculated in "Pension Valuation.
Under all acceptable actuarial cost methods
used to value public pension costs and liabilities, future benefit payment cash flows are discounted to a present value based on long-term expected investment returns of the pension fund.
Actuarial cost method
--One of die following actuarial cost methods
should he used: entry age, frozen entry age, attained age, frozen attained age, projected unit credit, (18) or aggregate, as described in paragraph 47, Section B.
Appreciation for the complexity of pension funding is increased after delving into this treatise of the numerous demographic and economic assumptions made by sponsors, along with the actuarial cost methods
One of six recognized actuarial cost methods
should be used.
Readers will recall that APBO 8 required accrual accounting but permitted pension expense to be measured using one of several actuarial cost methods
Appendix A serves as an in depth explanation of six actuarial cost methods
used with small pension plans.
Since SFAS 87 requires a standardized method (benefits/years of service) for measuring net periodic pension cost, in contrast to allowing any of five actuarial cost methods
acceptable in the past, this required measurement is more understandable, comparable, and hence more useful than those in past practice.