Latest articles from Benjamin Mercer

PPF to slash levy by more than £400mn in two years

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The Pension Protection Fund is to slash its levy by more than £400mn by 2023-24, after a review found strong investment performance and a reduced risk of claims.

Webb: Opperman achieved but ‘got sidetracked easily’


Podcast: LCP partner Sir Steve Webb gives his view on Guy Opperman’s time as pensions minister, and discusses under-saving in defined contribution and a local council investment scandal.

Weekly Roundup: Who wants to be pensions minister?

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This week – Opperman dismissed from pensions minister post, study discovers that most low earners cannot afford auto-enrolment contributions, the FBU nudges members towards employment tribunals in a bid to protect their rights, and a law firm attempts to ignore the Pensions Ombudsman.

Inflation presents ‘considerable risk’ to DC pension pots

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Skyrocketing inflation figures pose unique challenges for defined contribution pension schemes as memberships surge to record highs, according to the Pensions Policy Institute’s DC Future Book.

Majority of low earners cannot afford auto-enrolment contributions

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Nearly seven in 10 (69 per cent) of low earners are unable to afford pension contributions due to the cost of living crisis, according to new research from Legal & General Investment Management.

Covid-hit fiduciary management market gains 70% in 5 years

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Although the UK fiduciary management market has risen by 11 per cent a year over the past five years, its growth is still below the previous period’s figures, with Covid-19 having an impact on selection processes in 2021, according to a survey by IC Select.

APPT pushes for diversity and inclusion in trustee boards

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On the go: The Association of Professional Pension Trustees has launched a ‘hints and tips’ briefing focused on diversity and inclusion, in a bid to influence how trustees go about shaping their boards.

Ombudsman orders law firm to pay thousands in missing contributions


The Pensions Ombudsman has handed a £1,000 fine to a law firm and ordered it to repay thousands more in missing contributions, after it failed to engage either with the affected member or the ombudsman’s office.

FBU urges employment tribunal to protect member benefits


The Fire Brigades Union has said it will encourage and assist its members in taking claims before an employment tribunal to protect their pension benefits, while it continues to negotiate with the Home Office for a permanent solution.

Ombudsman hits Teachers’ Pensions with maladministration fine

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The Pensions Ombudsman has fined Teachers’ Pensions £500 for maladministration after it failed to adequately inform a member about the rules around breaks in pensionable service, but dismissed the member’s argument that the fine should be increased to the minimum required in cases of employment discrimination.