Latest articles from Stephanie Hawthorne

Could FSCS cope with a major bulk annuity provider default?

Bank of England 2021 (teaser)

As sponsors offload their pension schemes to insurers, industry experts fear that an ever-increasing concentration of assets with a small group of players could lead to compensation schemes being overwhelmed in a major downturn.

Should pension schemes invest in cryptocurrencies?


It has been mooted that cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin could rival gold as an investment, but what are the main issues trustee boards need to consider before allocating to the asset class?

Sole trusteeship on the rise amid calls for tougher regulation

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With sole trustees now accounting for one in three professional trustee appointments, there is a feeling in the industry that regulation is lagging this fast-growing sector.

New covenant support deal for Clarks as trustees approve CVA


The shoe retailer has entered into a company voluntary arrangement as part of a package aimed at maintaining its obligations to the C&J Clark Pension Fund.

DC consolidation puts the brakes on illiquid investments


Host of barriers facing defined contribution schemes looking to invest in illiquid assets, despite encouragement from the government.

Experts dismiss national pension fund proposal

Analysis: Experts have largely poured scorn on a highly controversial proposal to create a gigantic national sovereign fund by merging public schemes and then mopping up private plans as well.

Embattled charities face pensions no-win situation


With charities being crushed by the pandemic-led financial crisis, the situation of their defined benefit schemes has become even more precarious, with some organisations not being able to afford future pension liabilities

Absent trustees hamper scheme decision-making during pandemic


With some schemes having to temporarily suspend operations due to absent trustee board members during the crisis, more guidance is needed on how best to manage unforeseen absences.

Scheme demand could see ‘greenium’ for new-style gilts

Green bonds

Pension schemes are expected to jump at the opportunity of investing in the first issuance of green bonds in the UK, which could lead to a green premium.

LPPA embarks on data journey and reaps rewards of digital tracing

Laptop hand IT PC (teaser)

Case study: A renewed effort to ramp up digital tracing and mortality screening has been a boon to the Local Pensions Partnership Administration, with the exercise having the potential to cut costs, save time and improve actuarial valuations.