• PENSIONSANDSAVINGS.COM

    From Ros Altmann:economist and pensions,
    investment and retirement policy expert

  • pensionsandsavings.com

    New scheme funding rules risk undermining Defined Benefit pensions and would cost employers billions of pounds

    New scheme funding rules risk undermining Defined Benefit pensions and would cost employers billions of pounds

    Changes to pension funding rules pose a serious threat to workers’ future pension prospects.  Measures supposedly designed to improve pension funding and security may well have the opposite effect.    As exceptional monetary measures have damaged pension funding, pension schemes need more potential for asset growth, not less.  The Pensions Regulator’s proposed new rules may require schemes to sell growth assets, forcing employers to put scarce corporate resource into the pension fund rather than the business.  Government should encourage pension…

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    Simple Annual Pension Statements – a great idea!

    Simple Annual Pension Statements – a great idea!

    Great to see DWP plans to force pension firms to produce standardised simple annual statements. Customers need simple language to help understand and engage with their pensions. Pensions Dashboard will not work without standardisation – and accurate dat.   New statements should be promoted and explained by national public information campaign.  Standardised, simpler statements need to be mandatory for all providers: The DWP has just released its decision in response to the consultation on simpler, standardised annual pension statements. I am…

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    State Pension Age hits 66 – isn’t it time to consider allowing early access for those who desperately need it?

    State Pension Age hits 66 – isn’t it time to consider allowing early access for those who desperately need it?

    As State Pension Age rises to 66 with economic meltdown boosting unemployment, there is a strong case to allow early access to State Pensions.  Many over-60s are unwell, genuinely unable to work, or are caring for others and have no private pension.  Healthy life expectancy across the country varies by around 20 years, so rising State Pension Age hits these least healthy hardest.  Those with long National Insurance records, poor health and no prospect of employment cannot receive any State Pension…

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    Women disappointed by Court of Appeal State Pension Age ruling may have another route

    Women disappointed by Court of Appeal State Pension Age ruling may have another route

    Women’s State Pension Age ruling is disappointing but not entirely unexpected.  All hope is not lost.  Injustice felt by so many women may be due to maladministration rather than discrimination.  Government may have misled many women and caused them hardship which they had no idea was coming or could not avoid. The Court of Appeal’s clear ruling today that the sharp increases in women’s State Pension Age did not discriminate against women affected. The judges expressed sympathy for their plight,…

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    Over £600billion could be at risk from pension scams – taxpayers lose out while customers need better protection

    Over £600billion could be at risk from pension scams – taxpayers lose out while customers need better protection

    Major pension provider joins Police Foundation to call on Government and Regulators to urgently improve consumer protections against pension scams. Over £600billion of taxpayer money may be at risk of being lost. Latest research from The Police Foundation and The People’s Pension concludes greater powers are needed to help prevent transfers to suspected scam schemes. Report highlights need for centralised information-sharing and co-ordination between providers, regulators, police and agencies. Pension providers are on the front-line to protect against scams –…

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    Public Accounts Committee is right to call for urgent action to ensure social care does not fail the most vulnerable

    Public Accounts Committee is right to call for urgent action to ensure social care does not fail the most vulnerable

    PAC calls for urgent short-term action on social care to ensure equality with NHS.  Government response was ‘slow, inconsistent and at times negligent’, as NHS was not co-ordinated with social care.  Current system failed those who needed it most and lessons must be learned before any second wave hits. Committee demands improved social care funding, clear responsibilities and accountability. Social Care in the UK is not fit for 21st Century and urgent radical reform must be introduced. The Commons Public…

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    Helping low earners’ pensions – Glad to see Government’s Call for Evidence

    Helping low earners’ pensions – Glad to see Government’s Call for Evidence

    Government calls for evidence on addressing scandal of lowest earners paying 25% extra for their pensions.  Over one million low-paid women are unknowingly auto-enrolled into employer schemes which leave them with lower take-home pay. Who is looking after these lowest earners who surely need every penny of their pay and their pensions and cannot protect themselves against the income loss.  Short-term fixes could include requiring employers to use suitable schemes for low earners or for schemes and employers to ensure…

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    Stronger, safe pensions from Lords Pension Schemes Bill amendments

    Stronger, safe pensions from Lords Pension Schemes Bill amendments

    House of Lords passes important Pension Schemes Bill changes to better protect people’s pensions. Better protection for all types of pension and improved consumer safeguards in Pension Dashboard.   Last night, important changes were introduced to the Pension Schemes Bill which has been going through the House of Lords, before passing to the Commons in coming weeks. Government should be congratulated for its work on this important Bill: The proposals cover many vital aspects of the future pensions landscape. Its…

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    What will current crisis do to the State Pension triple lock?

    What will current crisis do to the State Pension triple lock?

    Will current crisis spell the long-overdue review of totemic state pension triple lock? Yes, Government must protect pensioners, but triple lock is not best way. Triple lock is more about politics than protection and does not properly cover over-70s. Reform of pensioner support as economy recovers likely to be on Treasury agenda as earnings and inflation numbers will be distorted by emergency measures. Will current crisis reduce political attachment to totemic state pension triple lock?: The Government absolutely must protect pensioners,…

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    Is time up for the triple lock?

    Is time up for the triple lock?

    It’s really important to protect pensioners – but is triple lock the best means of doing so?    Triple lock does not protect the poorest and oldest pensioners.  Moving to a double lock to increase State Pensions, including Pension Credit,  by best of earnings or price inflation would offer better protection.  The Triple Lock on State Pensions was introduced in 2011 to protect pensioner incomes. Over many years, the Basic State Pension had fallen significantly behind general increases in income…

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