Most economists believe that the official funding numbers published by public employee pension plans substantially overstate these plans’ financial health and understate their unfunded liabilities. This is in part because the plans use standard actuarial valuation to determine the plans' liabilities. An alternative approach, and one favored by most economists, would be to use "fair market valuation" instead. This essay compares the funding levels and unfunded liabilities of Missouri Government Employee pension plans using both standard and fair-market approaches.
Read the full essay 20151207 – The Funding Health of Local Government Pensions in Missouri – Biggs.pdf.