Pension news

Week ending 27 March 2020

Regulator update on Covid-19

TPR has published updated guidance on its website for trustees, administrators and employers and has said that the page will continue to be updated. The guidance covers the Regulator’s expectations of trustees, the need to protect members from scammers, what administration services to prioritise, how TPR will take a proportionate and risk-based approach to enforcement at this time and the fact that TPR is temporarily suspending its regulatory initiatives. The timescale for the open DB funding consultation will be reviewed in the coming weeks. A new page designed to help DB scheme trustees whose sponsoring employers are in corporate distress has also been published.

Parliament closes

The House of Commons and the House of Lords have risen early for their Easter recess and will return on 21 April. Neither the Pension Schemes Bill nor the Finance Bill 2019-21 (which contains the new limits for the tapered annual allowance, as announced in the Budget) have been enacted into law yet.

Delay to new pension transfer advice rules

The FCA has quietly updated when it will provide the final handbook text on changes to pension transfer advice, particularly for DB to DC transfers. This text seems likely to include banning contingent charging. The revised timescale is the second or third quarter of 2020 (rather than the first quarter).

HMRC allows temporary flexibility

HMRC has released its latest Pension Schemes Newsletter, which contains some temporary changes (initially for three months) to processes for scheme administrators. HMRC recognises that administrators may have challenges submitting returns before deadlines and obtaining “wet signatures” at this time.

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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