Latest articles from Sarah Cowburn

Cap on golden handshakes could affect average earners at Magnox

Dungeness nuclear power station (Getty Images)

Workers across the public sector will see a £95,000 cap on exit payments under a new clause added to the 2015-16 enterprise bill which could hit average earners at nuclear decommissioning company Magnox.

New code firms up boundaries on incentive exercises

revised code of practice on incentive exercises will provide trustees and employers with practical tips on problem areas as schemes begin to target more holistic derisking strategies.

Savers slow to embrace freedoms, PLSA report shows

Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association

The majority of the 2.8m defined contribution savers eligible to access pension freedoms have not yet done so, new research has shown, as low financial confidence and high risk aversion stalls the freedoms.

MUMS the word: Medically underwritten mortality studies' benefit questioned

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Analysis: Medical underwriting of defined benefit scheme members to facilitate bulk annuity insurance transactions has taken off over the past two years, but industry experts are sceptical of the benefits of using medical data for scheme valuations.

Simpler AE could benefit small employers

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Further simplification of auto-enrolment regulations, now under consultation by the Department for Work and Pensions, will benefit small employers, but industry experts have said the policy is still playing catch-up with “horrendously complex” legislation.

Panning for gold in an age of information

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Any Other Business: The mounting complexity of pension trusteeship has been met by a surge of information and intelligence sources. But how can trustees be successful prospectors as they mine the industry for useful nuggets?

Project POOL maps the route for LGPS

Pooling assets across the Local Government Pension Scheme could ultimately deliver annual savings of £190m-£300m, according to new analysis that goes some way to giving LGPS funds much-needed clarity.


Homebase M&A deal puts scheme security in the spotlight

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Home Retail Group’s defined benefit scheme will receive a £50m cash injection as part of the proposed sale of its Homebase business, underscoring the need for trustees to consider the impact of disposals on covenant strength. 


Retirement expectations at odds with reality

Analysis: People retiring in 2016 expect a retirement income of £17,700 a year, new research has shown, but industry experts have questioned how this figure will be maintained as the decline of defined benefit provision accelerates.


Treasury empowers FCA to curb exit charges


The Treasury today announced plans for new legislation that will place a duty on the Financial Conduct Authority to cap 'excessive' early exit charges for members seeking to access pension savings under the freedoms.