The BBC is to offer paid-for independent financial advice to help members get the most from the pension freedoms, in particular to support those considering transferring their assets.
From the blog: Two in every five people are not confident they could tell the difference between a scam and a genuine investment.
That's according to a survey by financial adviser Portal Financial, which assessed 1,000 people aged over 55 across the UK.
As a result those individuals are vulnerable to investment scams with terms attached that are more attractive than any genuine scheme.
Proactive investment strategies are key for protecting schemes in times of high volatility, experts have said, as ripples from the Chinese market rout reinforce the need for scheme triggers.
The broader experience of financial directors and company executives may enhance pension trustee boards' insight and understanding, but conflicts of interest should be carefully managed.
From the blog: Financial services is the least trusted industry of all. Those responsible for running pensions should think about what this means – and what it explains.
Research on trust in different industries around the world found a correlation between distrust of financial services and the issues the pensions industry is facing, such as:
- frustratingly low levels of engagement, despite expenditure on communication and education;
- individuals persistently refusing to join pension schemes, despite tax concessions and employers’ willingness to contribute;
- the need to auto-enrol millions of people into pensions, despite saving for old age being a sound idea.
Schemes must not run more risk than they can afford, say experts, as UK private sector defined benefit deficits rocket to £900bn.
Comment & Analysis
Talking Head: A move to tax pensions like Isas is on the cards with far-reaching consequences for long-term saving, says the Society of Pension Professionals' Duncan Buchanan.
Investment governance committees lack the power of a trustee board, says Sackers' Helen Ball, but they can still change workplace pensions for the better.
Buyouts remain a popular derisking strategy for defined benefit schemes. Aon Hewitt's Martin Bird looks at how the medically underwritten option is gaining ground in this burgeoning market.
Video: The Pensions Regulator's chief executive Lesley Titcomb outlines the watchdog's key areas of focus – including a revision of the DC code, the freedom fallout and mastertrust assurance, and touches on the argument for a single regulator (6:11).
Video: Which trends are driving how pension funds are structuring their growth portfolios? M&G Investments' Steven Andrew, Nest's Mark Fawcett and Barnett Waddingham's Marcus Whitehead discuss the opportunities and risks (5:55).
Video: Aviva Investors' Mark Versey, plus HR Trustees' Giles Payne and Redington's Kenny Nicoll discuss how underlying investment strategies are evolving (5:47).