See Buttonwood: Money to burn | The Economist
This article should be of interest to people who are worried that their pension plan is underfunded. Pensioners are owed a stream of future payments and their valuation in today's money depends on the interest rate used to discount them. Take a weekly pension payment of €100 due in 5 years. The liability in the accounts for it today would be €78 at a 5% discount rate and €65 at 9% discount rate,the difference in these liabilities being 17%. The more distant the future payments,the greater this difference would be-55% at 20 years,quite a temptation for liberal accounting.