• PENSIONSANDSAVINGS.COM

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

  • pensionsandsavings.com

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    Category: Pensions

    State Pension after Brexit and frozen pensioners

    State Pension after Brexit and frozen pensioners

    Good news for British expats in Europe as Withdrawal Agreement guarantees their State Pensions will not be frozen. Government should now reassure these pensioners that, whatever happens after 2020, they have lifelong state pension uprating.   However this is only for expats already in Europe by year-end. Government must warn people of the risk that future retirees who move to Spain, France or other European countries after 2020 may have their pension frozen. This note deals with the question of…

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    NHS pension crisis won’t be solved by tinkering with the taper rules

    NHS pension crisis won’t be solved by tinkering with the taper rules

    NHS pension crisis won’t be resolved by raising Tapered Annual Allowance threshold.  Senior staff need certainty that their pension ‘benefits’ do not become a costly penalty for extra work. Government must abolish unworkable taper rules, not just tweak them. I have suggested my own 10-point action plan for addressing the crisis.   It is of course reasonable for the Government to look to control the costs of tax incentives: The TAA was originally announced as reducing the £40,000 annual contributions…

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    Let’s celebrate the PPF’s success

    Let’s celebrate the PPF’s success

    Let’s celebrate the Pension Protection Fund as Carillion becomes its 1000th pension scheme.    PPF has been a real success story, with around a quarter of a million members having their pensions underwritten after their employer schemes failed.    Before PPF existed, members could lose their entire life savings and their pension. I am delighted to see the ongoing success of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF). Carillion has just become the 1000th scheme to enter the pensions lifeboat and its…

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    Govt commitment to reform NHS pensions may pave the way for radical pension tax relief reform too

    Govt commitment to reform NHS pensions may pave the way for radical pension tax relief reform too

    Could Government commitment to sort out NHS pensions herald radical pension reform?  NHS problems are canary in the coalmine showing need to urgently change pensions tax rules.  Tapered Annual Allowance and Lifetime Allowance should be changed or abolished.  Reforming the £50billion annual cost of pensions tax reliefs (which gives top earners most help) could raise much-needed revenue AND improve pension outcomes. Reforms that could introduce new one-nation pension incentives and also save money include: Give everyone the same top-up to…

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    Time for Government to force pension firms to send plain English statements to their customers so they can understand pensions

    Time for Government to force pension firms to send plain English statements to their customers so they can understand pensions

    Government should force pension firms to send simpler, standardised annual statements.   It’s time for pension providers to help customers understand their pensions, not leave them baffled by jargon. Pensions Dashboard will not work without standardisation – and accurate data.   Annual pension statements could be sent for customer’s birthday wishing ‘many happy returns’! New statements should be promoted and explained by national public information campaign. Showing forecast pension at two ages e.g 60 and 67 could offer positive behavioural…

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    Conservative Manifesto pensions tax commitment would give over a million low paid women more money

    Conservative Manifesto pensions tax commitment would give over a million low paid women more money

    Net Pay Action Group has ‘oven-ready’ proposals to end injustice of forcing low-paid workers to pay 25% surcharge on their pensions.  New Government can improve income and pension prospects for more than one million women.  Honouring the Conservative manifesto commitment will ensure lowest earners get the Government contribution to their pensions.   The Net Pay Action group has submitted proposals that will allow the Government to honour its manifesto commitment to address the injustice faced by workers earning below £12,500…

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    Conservative Election Manifesto pension policies are worth highlighting

    Conservative Election Manifesto pension policies are worth highlighting

    At last, recognition of injustice for lowest earners, mainly women, forced to pay 25% extra for their pensions in auto-enrolment. Deal with NHS pensions crisis in 30 days – which hopefully will herald radical overhaul of annual and lifetime allowance problems for all. Revival of Pensions Bill quickly for Pensions Dashboard and better Regulator powers. Encourage pension funds to increase long-term investment in scientific development. But more to do on State Pension problems. After this weekend’s bombshell announcement by Labour…

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    Private pension reforms urgently needed

    Private pension reforms urgently needed

    Private pension reforms that could improve pension outcomes especially for women, low earners, NHS senior staff and younger savers.    As we wait to see who forms the next Government, here are some recommendations for pension reforms they need to urgently consider: Net Pay tax relief reform Reform Tapered Annual Allowance Abolish Lifetime Allowance: Default Financial Guidance Abolish Lifetime ISA   Net Pay tax relief reform The lowest earners needs the most help to build up good pensions. Most women…

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    Progressive reform agenda to improve quality of life for older citizens, especially women

    Progressive reform agenda to improve quality of life for older citizens, especially women

    Here are some thoughts about urgent policy proposals to improve the fairness of the National Insurance system for women and for the aging population. Top 5 policy recommendations:    Extend triple lock to Pension Credit for oldest, poorest pensioners. Allow early access to State Pension for ill-health, long service or carers. Recognise WASPI concerns and address hardship caused by increased state pension age. Remove National Insurance loopholes that cause women to lose State Pension credits. Offer free personal social care…

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    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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