Latest articles from Benjamin Mercer

DWP’s stronger nudge is not ‘fit for purpose’

News on the go

On the go: The “stronger nudge” towards guidance recently proposed by the Department for Work and Pensions is inadequate on its own and will impact members too late in the process to have a real effect, according to industry experts.

USS employers pledge greater covenant support

Financial Times

Universities UK, the group representing 340 Universities Superannuation Scheme employers, has pledged additional covenant support to the pension scheme, in a move it said will spare its members the crippling contribution rate rises announced following the scheme’s 2020 valuation.

Industry experts predict limited roll-out of CDC schemes

Getty Images

The government's consultation on regulations governing collective defined contribution schemes was received as a welcome step forward in the industry, but experts have cautioned that initial demand is likely to be low due to the restrictive conditions and high costs imposed on the market.

DWP’s move to DC universal charge structure could do ‘serious damage’


Industry commentators are worried about the Department for Work and Pensions’ proposal to introduce a universal annual management charge in defined contribution default funds, warning that the move is premature and could do “serious damage” to the pensions market.

DWP’s ‘vision’ for superfunds to be published later this year

News on the go

On the go: The Department for Work and Pensions intends to set out its “vision” for the future regulation of superfunds in autumn/winter this year, according to its annual report published on Thursday.

Weekly Roundup: Rules of engagement


This week – PASA launches GMP conversion guidance, DWP issues ‘stronger nudge’ to guidance, study finds greener pensions are ‘most effective’ way to fight climate change, and PLSA argues dashboards staging timeline is too ‘ambitious’.

Four out of five investors to increase fixed income exposure

News on the go

On the go: Eighty per cent of institutional investors intend to increase their fixed income exposure over the next three years, with one in six expecting this increase to be “significant”, according to a study by Aviva Investors.

Pension tax change proposals branded ‘tragic’ and ‘crazy’

News on the go

On the go: Rumours that the Treasury is planning to raid pensions have been branded “tragic” and “crazy” by speakers at a Hymans Robertson webinar, who warned that any reforms harming incentives to save could undo the work put in to boost retirement standards.

PPF 7800 Index shows surplus and funding improvements

News on the go

On the go: The PPF 7800 Index for June shows improvements in the surplus and funding positions (on a section 179 basis) for the more than 5,000 schemes potentially eligible for entry to the Pension Protection Fund.

Covid-19 sees drop in sponsor support for DB schemes

News on the go

On the go: The economic damage and uncertainty wrought by Covid-19 has seen a drop in employer support for defined benefit pension schemes, suggesting they will find it harder to meet their pension obligations as the pandemic’s fallout continues.