USS expert panel calls for dual discount rate in 2020 valuation

The Universities Superannuation Scheme Joint Expert Panel, set up to review the valuation of the scheme, is calling for a “dual discount rate approach” to the 2020 valuation, aimed at distinguishing between past and future accrual.

Elections 2019: Pension reforms expected after Tory majority

Sweeping pension system reforms are expected following the Conservative party’s comprehensive victory in Thursday’s general election, with more powers coming for the regulator, a tax review for the higher and lower paid, and experts calling for more work on retirement adequacy.

DB schemes still fit for purpose

When Michelle Ostermann came to the UK to work for RPMI Railpen, in the beginning of 2019, she was surprised by the number of closed corporate defined benefit schemes in the UK.

When doing the right thing can get you stung

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How trustees can avoid maladministration claims over pension transfer scams.

Master trusts forced to up reserves due to levy increase

Master trusts will be hit twice by a general levy increase, since in addition to a cost hike these schemes will also have to boost their reserves in case of a wind-up, and face added scrutiny from the regulator as a revised business plan could be expected.

Comment & Analysis

Time to get creative with member communication

Maria Espadinha

Trustees should find new ways of engaging with members about pension scams, writes deputy editor Maria Espadinha

Is there a future for equities in DB?

Jonathan Libre (teaser)

Data Crunch: Corporate defined benefit schemes have been shifting allocations away from equities as a means of reducing funding volatility and focusing on assets that can deliver contractual cash flows.

Closing the gender pensions gap: Lessons from Sweden

Stefan Lundbergh

Cardano's Stefan Lundbergh argues the UK gender pensions gap could be reduced if parents had subsidised childcare, giving the Swedish model as inspiration.

Videos & Podcasts

What falling sterling means for pension funds

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Podcast: It has been a rocky few months for sterling, with the currency falling more than 7 per cent since May. In this podcast, Shoqat Bunglawala, head of Goldman Sachs Asset Management’s global portfolio solutions business, and Simeon Willis, chief investment officer at XPS Pensions, discuss the main reasons behind the decline, and what it means for pension funds.

Tackling the 'long tail' of underperforming smaller schemes

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Podcast: The Pensions Regulator’s latest defined contribution survey revealed that only 4 per cent of micro schemes and 1 per cent of small schemes are meeting all of the watchdog’s governance standards. David Fairs, TPR's executive director for regulatory policy, analysis and advice, has previously described the "long tail" of underperforming smaller schemes as "unacceptable". In this podcast, Mr Fairs talks to Pensions Expert about what the survey's findings mean, and how the DC landscape might change. 

The future of trusteeship

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Podcast: Is there a big difference in governance standards between boards with a professional trustee and boards without? Should lay trustees have to demonstrate how they have acquired a minimum level of knowledge and understanding? And what can be done to increase diversity on boards? In this episode, Laura Andrikopoulos, head of governance consulting at Hymans Robertson, discusses some of the Pensions Regulator's 'Future of trusteeship and governance' consultation proposals, and what impact they might have on the industry.