This thesis discusses accounting for retirement benefits in the accounts of the employer providing these benefits and accounting by the pension fund itself. In order to be able to provide a meaningful discussion of these accounting issues, it has been necessary to undertake a substantial investigation of several related issues. These related issues are the legal background in which a pension fund operates, including the powers, duties and liabilities of trustees, pension fund legislation and the relevant tax legislation as well as the word of actuaries and auditors, who provided professional services to pension funds and to employers. It was necessary to examine these related issues, not only to be able to do justice to the basic problem of accounting, but also because these topics are important in themselves and very little has been written in South Africa about them. This study therefore represents, to a certain extent, a codification of the knowledge and expertise required by all parties involved in the administration of private pension funds. In dealing with accounting by an employer providing retirement benefits, theoretical accounting concepts were examined, accounting standards applying in the United Kingdom, Canada and America, as well as the International accounting standard and the South African standards were discussed and other related topics referred to. In dealing with accounting by the pension fund, the International accounting standard, the United Kingdom guideline, the American standard and a Canadian research study were discussed, accounting standards applying in South Africa were dealt with and legislative and other provisions examined. Recommendations were made in the thesis for improvements to the current accounting practices as well as in relation to the powers, duties and liabilities of trustees and auditors. These recommendations involve substantial amendments to the South African accounting standard applying to retirement benefit information in the accounts of employees and to pension fund legislation. The thesis concludes with a discussion of problems related to the provision of retirement benefits and recommendations made and a brief survey of possible future developments in the industry.
|Degree Type||Doctoral degree|