• PENSIONSANDSAVINGS.COM

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

  • pensionsandsavings.com

    Implications of the Woodford debacle

    Implications of the Woodford debacle

    Woodford Funds collapse highlights inadequate protections for ordinary investors.  Regulatory actions too little too late – funds with rising risks, falling liquidity and daily pricing need more timely intervention.   Clear warning signs in 2017 – Guernsey ‘listing’ for illiquid holdings was obvious red flag.    Does FCA have adequate powers to suspend management charges or penalise managers?    Loss of confidence in retail fund management industry may increase use of lower cost passive funds.    Inadequate protections for ordinary investors:…

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    High Court ruling on women’s state pension age

    High Court ruling on women’s state pension age

    1950s women disappointed as High Court says Government did not discriminate against them.   Equalising pension AGE does not mean pension equality – women still get much lower pensions than men.  Many women have been pushed into poverty and did not know about the changes. Government should help those in hardship – perhaps allowing early access to State Pension or Pension Credit for those hardest hit.  In a landmark ruling today, the High Court has dismissed the claim brought on…

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    The next stage for pension integration as KeyPay acquires pensionsync

    The next stage for pension integration as KeyPay acquires pensionsync

    The next stage for pension integration as KeyPay acquires pensionsync. Australian-based firm will take forward further development to help bring pensions administration into the modern era.   UK is in the dark ages on pensions technology relative to Australia and many other countries. Another vital step on the path to Making Pensions Digital. I am pleased to let you know that KeyPay, a cloud-payroll and workplace management provider, has just acquired pensionsync. Having joined pensionsync last year as Chair, to…

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    Increasing State Pension Age to 75 would be an outrage

    Increasing State Pension Age to 75 would be an outrage

    Increasing State Pension Age to 70 and then 75 would be wrong. Strict chronological age cut-off ignores the 19-year gap in healthy life expectancy across UK.  Saving public money is all well and good, but not by penalising the poorest and most vulnerable. Working longer can be good for health and wealth but it should be a choice, not forced labour. More flexibility is needed for earlier pensions for people in poor health and unpaid carers. UK already has the…

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    NHS pensions and wider reform

    NHS pensions and wider reform

    NHS pension crisis shows tapered Annual Allowance rules are classic example of bad policy-making. Government consultation on NHS pensions should include broader reforms – not just tinkering with one scheme. The Annual Allowance taper disincentivises senior staff from working and building up pensions. Policy flaws to be remedied are complexity, cliff-edge and retrospection. Tapered Annual Allowance pension rules are a classic example of bad policy design: The rules are far too complicated, impossible to predict properly and have damaging side-effects…

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    NHS pension crisis – new proposals welcome as a start, more to do

    NHS pension crisis – new proposals welcome as a start, more to do

    Glad to see Government proposing urgent action to address NHS Pension Crisis. This is not about high earners but about fairness and transparency – these staff have been let down by their employer – that’s you and me! More flexibility is a start but NHS must also acknowledge duty of care to staff who feel betrayed. Government should also consider offering access to independent financial advice for NHS staff. Ideally, the Annual Allowance taper should be scrapped – it’s far…

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    There is no democratic mandate for a No Deal Brexit

    There is no democratic mandate for a No Deal Brexit

    Forcing through a No Deal Brexit would be a betrayal of our democracy. The Referendum result does not give the Government a mandate to leave without a Deal and did not specify any particular Brexit date. The Leave campaign promised more free trade deals and more money to spend on our priorities. It certainly did not state that we would leave without any Deal at all, with all the risks for our society, economy and prosperity. For the past three…

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    Regulators must do more to protect pension customers against scams and high fees

    Regulators must do more to protect pension customers against scams and high fees

    MPs demand urgent action to protect pension savers from scams and excessive charges. Regulator should devote more resources and produce early warning systems to help avoid scams. Must also ensure more customers receive their free guidance guarantee. Improving transparency and clearly disclosing charges should be mandatory to help consumers compare products – not just a voluntary code. MPs also demand Government stop forcing lowest earners (mostly women) to pay 25% ‘penalty charge’ if their employer uses a Net Pay pension…

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    Public sector pension ruling has massive ramifications – more reform needed

    Public sector pension ruling has massive ramifications – more reform needed

    Firefighters landmark victory on public sector pensions will mean huge extra costs for taxpayers. Millions of public sector workers will have to be compensated, costing around £4billion a year. Massive indictment of Government handling of pension reform as it ignored advice that warned against discriminating in favour of older workers. Further reform of public sector pensions seems inevitable to control cost but risks industrial unrest. The Government has lost its Appeal to the Supreme Court against rulings that its changes…

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    The wonderful over-70s: inter-generational fairness has many aspects!

    The wonderful over-70s: inter-generational fairness has many aspects!

    LET’S CELEBRATE THE OVER-SEVENTIES. Having always been a champion of the skills, talents and societal contributions of older generations, I recently enjoyed one of my favourite afternoons of the year. It was so uplifting, I have decided to write about it. As Mark Twain said ‘age is an issue of mind over matter, if you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter’. That is so true. And a perfect example of this was revealed the other day when, thanks to the Chancellor…

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