Week ending 10 July 2020
In the Chancellor’s summer statement, the only item of note for pensions was the new ‘Kickstart scheme’, which involves a £2 billion fund to pay for short term work placements for 16-24 years olds on universal credit. The funding for these placements will cover the minimum wage, employer’s National Insurance contributions and also auto-enrolment contributions.
The Pensions Dashboards Programme has launched a call for input on the data standards required for dashboards, with a view to publishing a first version of the standards in the autumn. These standards will cover the data items that schemes will be required to provide and the format that the data must be in. Getting an agreed version of the standards should mean that schemes are able to move forward with their planning for this project.
Rolls-Royce is reported to be consulting on closing its DB scheme to future accrual. This had been planned for four years’ time but, following the pandemic, the company has now proposed bringing this forward. The scheme has approximately 10,000 active members, despite closing to new members in 2007.
UBS’s UK scheme has completed a £1.4 billion longevity swap covering 2,700 pensioner members. The transaction used a passthrough insurance contract with Zurich, with the longevity risk then reinsured with Canada Life.
In the news this week, pensions tax relief is back in the spotlight, the Treasury publishes draft legislation for CDC schemes and a big 4 accountant looks to temporarily reduce its DC contributions.
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.
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.
Covid-19 has created many challenges for DB schemes but, for those ready to transact in 2020, it may have created even more favourable market conditions for a buyout. The problem is that most schemes are not there yet. In this Briefing we look at what being “deal ready” actually means and what work it will involve.
Given the very company/scheme-specific impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, in this quarter’s Arena we simply show all the usual financial and investment analysis for what was a very turbulent first three months of 2020, plus a summary of key pension developments and Company pensions news over the quarter.
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