Pension news

Week ending 22 January 2021

Pension Schemes Bill at final hurdle

The Bill has now achieved House of Lords approval and is just waiting for Royal Assent, the final step in its long journey through Parliament. Now we await a raft of secondary legislation and guidance to put a lot of the (soon to be) Act’s changes into effect.

AE reviews

The review of the automatic enrolment earnings trigger and qualifying earnings band for 2021/22 has been published. The review has concluded that the earnings trigger will remain at £10,000 for the sixth year running. Likewise, the lower and higher levels of the qualifying earnings band will remain at the same level as the National Insurance Contributions lower and upper earnings limits of £6,240 and £50,270 respectively (this means the higher earnings limit will increase slightly from the current limit of £50,000).

Research into trustee decision-making

The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries has published a multidisciplinary academic study of judgment and decision-making processes in pension trustees. This has identified some key themes that could have a detrimental impact on the quality of trustee decision-making and therefore on a pension scheme itself. 

FCA publishes DB transfer data

The FCA has published data from the DB transfer advice market between October 2018 and March 2020. The percentage of members being recommended to transfer fell from 69% in October 2018 to 57% by March 2020, which the FCA sees as a sign of improvement. There was also a significant reduction in clients choosing to transfer against the advice they received, as insistent clients. The FCA also sees as positive the fact that, during the period, 130 firms stopped providing DB transfer advice.

Full buy-in

Evonik Holdings UK’s DB pension scheme has agreed a full buy-in with Legal & General for £544 million, covering over 3,600 members. The Company’s four UK DB schemes merged in order to facilitate the deal.

Recent publications

News

BAC News

Hymans Robertson announces today that it has acquired Bath Actuarial Consulting (BAC). At the same time Andrew Udale-Smith and Leonard Bowman from Bath Actuarial Consulting (BAC) will be joining the firm as new Partners.

News

29 January 2021

In the news over the last week, the DWP responds to its consultation on climate risk governance and reporting for pension schemes, transfer-blocking powers could be on the horizon, MaPS delivers on pension guidance and there’s more de-risking.

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.

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