Pension news

Week ending 22 November 2019

DB transfers

The Pensions Regulator has updated its guidance for DB to DC transfers. From 9 December 2019, the FCA will replace its Approved Persons Regime so that only senior managers and specific other roles will need to be approved. Advisers will be assessed as fit and proper by their firms, rather than being approved by the FCA. In order for trustees to check that a DB transferring member has received appropriate advice, they will need to check the FCA Register for details of the firm and then need to contact the firm to check that the adviser concerned has been certified by them. The FCA plans to release a new directory, with details of certified advisers, in 2020.

General election manifestos

Whilst the Conservatives’ manifesto is due to be published this coming weekend, a summary of Labour’s and the Liberal Democrat’s pension-related policies is as follows:

Labour

  • Stop people being auto-enrolled into “rip-off schemes” and seek to widen and expand access for more low-income and self-employed workers
  • Retain the state pension age of 66 and review retirement ages for physically arduous and stressful occupations
  • Maintain the state pension triple lock
  • Establish an independent Pensions Commission to recommend target levels for workplace pensions
  • Create a publicly run, transparent pensions dashboard, which includes costs and charges
  • Legislate for the Royal Mail collective DC scheme to proceed and allow similar schemes
  • Review the tax and pension changes implemented by the Conservative government (which seems likely to include the tapered annual allowance)
  • Compensate women born in the 1950s for their change in state pension age

Liberal Democrats

  • Review rules concerning pensions, so that those in the gig economy don’t lose out
  • Maintain the state pension triple lock
  • Compensate women born in the 1950s for their change in state pension age
  • Address continuing inequalities in pensions law for those in same-sex relationships
  • 1 pence rise on the basic, higher and additional rates of income tax to fund health and social care (thereby increasing pensions tax relief).

Recent publications

News

20 November 2020

In the news this week, the second Lloyds judgement says that historic transfer payments need to reflect GMP equalisation, the Pension Schemes Bill moves back to the Lords, TPR gets tough on AE compliance, the FCA surveys DB transfer advisers again and another buy-in is completed.

Arena

Pensions Arena October 2020

This quarter’s Arena has a summary of our recent Pensions Perspective, “Endgame planning comes of age”, which looked at how long-term funding and investment plans are evolving and why companies are increasingly taking the lead in designing an endgame strategy. It also shows all the usual financial and investment analysis for the quarter ending 30 September 2020.

Perspective

Endgame planning

Journey plans or glide paths may have been around for a long time but they’re at the heart of the Regulator’s proposed new funding code. In this Pensions Perspective, Leonard Bowman looks at how long-term funding and investment plans are evolving and explains why companies are increasingly taking the lead in designing an endgame strategy for their schemes.

Arena

Pensions Arena July 2020

This quarter’s Arena has a summary of our recent Pensions Perspective, “Emerging from lockdown”, which looked at how best to tackle the most common pension issues which companies are currently facing. It also shows all the usual financial and investment analysis for the quarter ending 30 June 2020.

Perspective

Emerging from lockdown

As we keep hearing, we are living in unprecedented times. However, as we turn our attention to the future, what does the “new normal” mean for defined benefit pension schemes? In this Pensions Perspective, Leonard Bowman considers the most common pension issues that companies are facing and how best to ensure that the company approaches these on the front foot.

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