Who wouldn’t like to have a crystal ball in today’s business environment? Interest rates, market highs and lows, industry profits, unexpected currents in world trade, political trends, shifting labor pools…. Uncertainty and risk seem to be the twin bywords of our era.
Enter the professional actuary. Risk is his or her bread and butter.
Actuaries are not fortune tellers, although it may seem that way sometimes. But in today’s complex, constantly changing world, actuaries have become as valuable as a wizard in an online game for their ability to measure and manage risk.
Actuarial services play a key role in retirement planning, which encompass ever-increasing complexity, regulatory requirements, demographic variety, and economic uncertainty. To manage the seemingly unmanageable, the actuarial staff at PSI uses practical, hard-data tools such as:
- proprietary software
- life contingency data
- actuarial cost methods
- customized formulas
At PSI, these actuarial methods are available to help the client understand, quantify, and manage uncertainty. This allows clients to plan for different contingencies.
Consider the actuary’s motto– Risk Is Opportunity. For every loser in a scenario, there is a winner. It’s what is known as the zero-sum game. But by identifying and quantifying risk, it’s possible to identify winning strategies as well. (The key, of course, is the wisdom to know the difference.)
Here are some ways our actuarial services can assist and support clients:
- by evaluating the likelihood of future events and their degree of probability;
- by designing ways to reduce the likelihood of undesirable events, and preparing for various outcomes;
- by minimizing the impact of negative factors on the client’s retirement plan and general financial outlook.
Sounds like common sense, doesn’t it? But surveys show that about half of investors actually make decisions without adequate data– by ‘gut’, if you wish.
While gut is fine for guitar strings or tennis racquets, we can think of few more gut-wrenching experiences than watching one’s assumptions go up in smoke because the gut instinct wasn’t supported by empirical evidence.
At PSI, our actuaries are skilled at assembling metrics, comparing relevant data, projecting trends into the future, and making assumptions on which we can act with a fair degree of certainty.
Of course, computer models can perform similar tasks. What distinguishes our actuaries from a computer is the professional who is managing the computer models.
The best actuarial talent is a combination of skills. It’s a talent that rests on years of experience, and depends on a support staff of accountants, attorneys, and administrators. At PSI, we bring these various disciplines together for a multifaceted approach with a proven track record.
No magic. Just numbers and common sense.