Pension Risk Behavior IndexSM (PRBISM)

“Bdellium has been a key partner in helping us create MetLife’s Pension Risk Behavior Index, a study of risk management attitudes and aptitude among plan sponsors.

We selected the firm for its demonstrated sophisticated and original approach to complex issues, which is strengthened by the intellectual rigor, thoughtful analysis and unwavering commitment it brings to each project”

Cynthia A.Mallett
Vice President,
Product & Market Strategies,
Corporate Benefit Funding, MetLife

MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET), through its subsidiaries and affiliates, is one of the largest and most trusted providers of insurance, employee benefits, annuities and other financial services to more than 90 million customers in over 60 countries. In 2008, MetLife decided to undertake groundbreaking research in order to promote public dialogue around pension risk issues for plan fiduciaries, help plan sponsors develop a new framework for understanding risks and explore solutions for mitigating risk exposure.


This research took the form of a quantitative and qualitative survey among 168 of the top defined benefit plans in the US and the results were published in a formal study in early 2009. The study received extensive media coverage and provided valuable material for constructive discussions with many plan sponsors and industry professionals. In 2010, a similar annual survey was inaugurated by MetLife Assurance in the UK, where it also generated substantial media and industry interest. Because of its success, the Pension Risk Behavior Index study became an important fixture in MetLife’s annual research calendar.

Bdellium developed the methodology used for the quantitative portion of the study and provides a detailed analysis of results from each survey. The method we developed measures the importance that respondents ascribe to managing each of 18 investment, liability and business risks, their reported success at implementing comprehensive practices to manage each risk and the consistency between the two. Bdellium also synthesized the results of the quantitative research into a single index, the MetLife Pension Risk Behavior IndexSM, that tracks both the attitude of plan sponsors towards, and their reported effectiveness in comprehensively addressing pension plan risks over time.

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