Vatican pension fund insists its finances are in decent shape, seeks to dispel 'alarmism'

The Vatican's pension fund is insisting it's in decent financial health, issuing its first ever public accounting to dispel what it called "alarmist information" about a shortfall circulating in the media.

The Vatican's financial czar, Cardinal George Pell, has raised concern about the fund's long-term health in recent newspaper interviews, saying it is sufficiently funded for the next 10-15 years but needs to be strengthened for future generations.

In a statement Friday, the fund managers said they thought it would be useful to release the figures publicly. They said there's "a substantial balance" between resources and commitments for current and future pensioners, with the fund 95 percent covered. The fund said it had taken many steps already to address its future commitments, including raising the retirement age and pension contributions.