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Combating pension scams – It’s good to talk

Ben Fisher

From the blog: In perhaps an ironic twist last month, Northumbria Police was found guilty of not doing enough to protect one of its officers from the risk of becoming the victim of a pension scam.

As a result, they were forced to reinstate the claimant’s accrued benefits in their scheme. This could turn out to be a landmark event in what is fast becoming a landmark year in the fight against pension scams. 

Many schemes will look at this case and ask themselves if they could be doing more for their members. So, what more could they do?

Select committee's new inquiry misses the point

Rory Gravatt

From the blog: It is bizarre that the Work and Pensions Committee is questioning whether people understand the cost and value for money of their pension products when the Financial Conduct Authority has only just published research that answers their question.

Its Retirement Outcomes Review states that over a third of consumers who had opted for pension freedoms had no idea where or how their money was invested.

If someone cannot understand the simplest level of information around their contract, they have little or no chance of understanding the costs involved or any concept of value for money.

Click here to read the full blog post

The Weekly Wrap: August 10 edition

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A round-up of the pensions news stories published across the FT Group this week, from waning life expectancy potentially adding up to £400m in exceptional profit for Legal & General, to the possibility of pensions for part-time workers in Japan.

DB transfers: What trustees and employers should consider

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Podcast: Since the introduction of freedom and choice in 2015, more and more savers have showed an interest in defined benefit transfers. In this episode, Ben Roe, senior partner and head of member options at Aon, and Gary Evans, board director at the Pensions and Administration Standards Association and chair of Pasa's Transfers Working Group, discuss the responsibilities of trustees and employers when it comes to DB transfers, and how they can support members in making the right decisions. 

The Weekly Wrap: August 3 edition

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A round-up of the pensions news stories published across the FT Group this week, from allegations of bribery at a New York retirement fund, to the Pensions Regulator's new approach to warning schemes about aggressive financial advisers.

A checklist for top bulk annuity pricing

Justin Grainger

From the blog: 2018 is predicted to see an unprecedented volume of pension schemes seeking to derisk using buy-ins or buyouts.

Given the finite resources of providers, pension schemes should expect a level of selection in what insurers will focus on – not all providers will necessarily quote on every transaction that comes to market.

This means schemes need to be well prepared when approaching the market to ensure the greatest level of interest from insurers.

Click here to read the full blog post.

BT’s 'sleight of hand' bond gift slashes accounting deficit

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BT’s defined benefit scheme has seen its accounting deficit drop by £1.8bn over the past quarter after investing in the bonds of its own sponsor, but some experts have questioned whether the move has any meaningful impact on member security.

The Weekly Wrap: July 27 edition

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A round-up of the pensions news stories published across the FT Group this week, from the hefty bill facing UK academics, to the end of the line for the Lifetime Isa.

Why equity protection should never be too expensive for schemes

Mark Davies

From the blog: Equity protection is back in vogue, with falls in markets at the start of the year putting downside protection strategies front of mind.

It is often more expensive for schemes to buy downside protection after markets have tumbled, as demand for such solutions jumps.

In fact, many schemes are missing a trick shelling out for this expensive downside protection, because costs do not have to be prohibitive as long as schemes buy the right kind of protection for them.

Click here to read the full blog post

PPF remains strong despite record liability intake

Podcast: The Pension Protection Fund's latest annual report shows it has weathered a record influx of defined benefit liabilities without much trouble. Chief financial officer Andy McKinnon discusses future challenges for the lifeboat amid a changing pensions landscape.

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