Latest articles from Benjamin Mercer

Weekly Roundup: Even more USS misery

AP Photo

This week – Universities UK tries to dispel 2020 valuation myths, the statements season triggers a war of words, calls for more policy direction on net zero targets, and DWP’s flat fee charging limit is dubbed a nice gesture.

Former TPR director served with summons over Section 75 debacle

News on the go

On the go: Alan Pickering, formerly a non-executive director of the Pensions Regulator and former chair of Plumbing Pensions, has been added to the summons in an employer’s £256,000 claim against the scheme’s trustee over its mishandling of Section 75 debt.

UCU demands a new USS valuation

News on the go

On the go: The University and College Union has published a list of demands of Universities UK, the group representing 340 Universities Superannuation Scheme employers, which it says must be met if strike action this winter is to be avoided.

Opperman not rushing CDC, defends statements season


Pensions minister Guy Opperman has confirmed there will be no regulations on multi-employer collective defined contribution schemes before the end of next year, set out targets for Pension Wise uptake, and become embroiled in a spat with former pensions minister Sir Steve Webb over the effectiveness of the proposed “statements season”.

Three-quarters of pension savers need more professional advice

News on the go

On the go: Three-quarters of savers lack the confidence to manage their own pensions and need professional advice, according to a survey from NerdWallet.

UUK tries to dispel valuation myths as UCU presses on with strike action


Universities UK, the group representing 340 Universities Superannuation Scheme employers, has argued that the rate increases facing USS members would not be alleviated by a new valuation, countering claims made by the University and College Union.

Weekly Roundup: School’s out forever


This week – the UCU gains ‘clear mandate’ for strike action over USS pension cuts, firefighters threaten legal action over McCloud costs, the government U-turns on minimum pension age hike protections, and the DWP proposes fraud compensation levy increase.

University of Dundee urged to agree pensions deal with striking staff

News on the go

On the go: The Scottish government’s higher education minister has urged the University of Dundee to reach an agreement with staff striking over controversial plans to move low-paid workers to a defined contribution scheme.

UCU members back strike action over USS pension cuts

Getty Images

University and College Union members have backed industrial action over cuts proposed by the Universities Superannuation Scheme trustee and Universities UK, the group representing 340 USS employers.

Massive retender exercise sees fiduciary manager fees drop

News on the go

On the go: The Competition and Markets Authority order for schemes to run a fiduciary management tender exercise led to a 345 per cent increase in retenders in 2021, a process that saw a marked decline in fees, according to research from Isio.