"As an industry, we put a lot of effort into assuring fair Government treatment for high earners. But what about the rest?" asks Aries' Ian Neale as he looks at Individual Protection (IP).
14 June 2013
Spence & Partners' Alan Collins dissects The Pensions Regulator's (TPR) latest funding statement, and encourages trustees to use the tools at their disposal.
07 June 2013
"Proper governance of schemes is an essential piece of the puzzle," says Pitmans Trustees' Steve Carrodus as he talks about the emergence of contract-based governance.
31 May 2013
Cardano's Richard Urban uses the story of Huckleberry Finn to encourage real estate investors to pause and reflect on their own decision making instead of blindly following "the wisdom of the crowd".
24 May 2013
"We are now seeing more and more illustrations of the merits of what we have lost," says Aries Pension & Insurance Systems' Ian Neale as he examines pension tax rules.
17 May 2013
"If you didn't know what Pension Liberation was, it might sound like a good thing," says Spence and Partners' Neil Copeland.
09 May 2013
If the Goode Committee were convened today, would it reach the same conclusions about pension scheme governance?
03 May 2013
RisCura's Andrew Slater gives his first-hand experience of Africa, and reflects on the investment opportunities there.
26 April 2013
The Pensions Regulator (TPR) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) both recognise that they need to work together, but Ian Neale from Aries Pension & Insurance Systems asks how well will the two cultures mesh.
18 April 2013
If you have ever been to India or watched The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel film sequence where their bus drives straight at the oncoming traffic, you will know that 'driving rules' are few and far between.
12 April 2013
Are we up for the challenges ahead as we move through the auto-enrolment implementation period, asks the Pensions Management Institute's Tim Middleton.
05 April 2013
"Fortunately there is a way for pension funds to smooth their funding levels without having to resort to averaging historical values or other dubious techniques," says Cardano's Helen Prior.
03 April 2013
"This was not a pensions-free Budget," says Ian Neale from Aries Pension & Insurance Systems as he gives us some insight into Budget 2013.
22 March 2013
Actuarial valuation. "If the very mention of this sends shivers down your spine then read on," says Spence & Partner's Marian Elliott.
15 March 2013
"How can scale be achieved? And how big is big enough?" asks Muse Advisory's director Mark Hodgkinson.
11 March 2013
"When trust in pensions is at an all time low, one has to ponder about what could happen if auto-enrolment goes wrong," says Atkin & Co.'s Chris Atkin.
01 March 2013
More and more people are becoming attracted to the idea of breaking open their pension piggy bank as the way out of debt.
22 February 2013
RisCura's Andrew Slater travels to Namibia to see a pension fund client, and poses the question: "Have we gone wrong in the UK to see pensions through such a distorted lens?"
15 February 2013
Just when you have a good idea for your next blog, someone steps in and pulls the rug from under you. At least, that's how I felt last week when last week's Pensions Week appeared on my screen.
08 February 2013
"Genuine all-rounders are rare," states Cardano's Steve Catchpole as he likens pension fund assets to cricket players.
04 February 2013
The Pension Investment Academy (PIA) summaries points made by Dr Ros Altmann, SAGA director general, at its seminar last week on the effects of quantitative easing (QE) on pension funds.
04 February 2013
The draft Pensions Bill is not entirely about state pension reform.
25 January 2013
The Government needs a clear communications policy to cut through the pensions spin.
25 January 2013
Mark Hodgkinson, director at Muse Advisory, uses an alternative tale to encourage trustees to think about how they can improve DC governance, before it's too late...
11 January 2013
Time to get the soap box out. Why do we persist in making pension projections to age 65? As life expectancy increases, these projections produce ever increasing contribution rates, required to provide what is deemed as a reasonable level of income.
04 January 2013
In my previous article I looked at the single positive commitment in the DWP paper "Reinvigorating Workplace Pensions" (aka 'defined ambition', or 'DA'). The rest of it read like a summary research paper of what might be done. Absent throughout was any recognition of the general rule that people will only do more than they have to do if there is an incentive.
03 January 2013
Remember when pink was the new black? No? I don't either – but fashions and fashion statements come and go (thank goodness – no more kipper tiers) and we give them the attention they deserve – which is very little. My contention for 2013 is that "Grey is the new grey."
03 January 2013
One of the 'must do' and 'must get right' activities for pension fund trustees is the selection, appointment and review of professional advisers and other service providers. Mark Hodgkinson, director at Muse Advisory sets out the best approach.
18 December 2012
Richard Butcher, managing director at Pitmans Trustees, gives us the top 5 assonances for DB governance.
12 December 2012
Hardly a week goes by without me receiving marketing material aimed at helping trustees to put in place some form of 'dynamic de-risking' flight path. The theory is simple enough; trustees want to take less risk, just not now. My fear is that these plans rely on mankind's natural optimistic tendencies and in the end boil down to making us feel better about doing nothing.
06 December 2012
The DWP's red tape review identified the Disclosure of Information Regs as the sole information item that needs serious reviewing, but, even if this is the case, Aries director Ian Neale asks: "Will this typical painfully-long gestation actually give birth to real simplification next year?"
30 November 2012
Human interactions are fascinating. Why do we 'click' with some people? Do we make all our business decisions rationally or is there an element of, "well, she/he seemed a really trustworthy person"?
23 November 2012
Everyone knows what the chairman does.....right? Well, perhaps not!
15 November 2012
So what red hot pensions topic have I chosen to write about for my first blog? The answer: TPR's recent recommendation that a tolerance level of £2 should be adopted when schemes reconcile their Guarantee Minimum Pension records with those of the National Insurance to Pensions Industry (NISPI). I fear a rather ignominious start to my blogging career....
08 November 2012
Though many promises have been made over the years to simplify pension regulation, the current situation is one of a near hair-pulling magnitude. Will we see more legislation coming our way in the next year or will the Government finally deliver on their simplification promises?
02 November 2012
Pensions is a numbers game – but most people don't 'like' numbers.
31 October 2012
Why should pension scheme members accept a lower standard of assessment of trustee board effectiveness than those same trustees expect from the boards of UK companies? Mark Hodgkinson discusses the various attributes a trustee board should incorporate in order to achieve the highest possible standards.
12 October 2012
In the Stone Age, people invested in their children, passing on the family cave and nurturing their family as a means of ensuring that they were looked after in their old age. Either that or they were pushed out and left to starve. But let's stick with the romantic view!
04 October 2012
Ian Neale, director at Aries Pensions UK, discusses how we could solve the small pots problem by giving people a clear overview of what they have accumulated over the years. But who would be in charge of this operation?
27 September 2012
Having regard to current EU initiatives which focus on pensions in Europe, this year and the next look to be the most intense and challenging years for pension provision in Europe that we will have seen for some time, says Patrick Burke, chairman of the EFRP.
27 September 2012
The Government expects changes to public servants benefits to save an estimated £430bn over the next 50 years or so. That's a lot of money! Are they ready to accept that change? Well, perhaps if they understand it, argues Mark Belchamber, director at Shilling Communication.
19 September 2012
In a new series of blogs, Mark Hodgkinson, director at Muse Advisory, talks us through the process of good governance for DC schemes. Who gains and who pays?
12 September 2012
Always a favourite with children around the world is the classic game of hide and seek. The game needs no fancy gadgets, there are only a few rules and everyone knows how to play it. And what's more, it's good fun!
06 September 2012
Auto-enrolment is about to suck many people into pensions for the first time, so the Government is anxious to make it work and minimise opt-outs. Engagement is going to be key: convincing workers that pension saving is worthwhile.
31 August 2012
A well-known song by the Who from 1964 is about "my generation". Included in this is the morbid desire of "I hope I die before I get old". That may well be some people's reaction when they see how much (or how little) their retirement income is projected to be.
23 August 2012
It is not just the Olympics that will be bringing obstacles to overcome, hurdles to leap and targets to be beaten in 2012. The retirement benefits industry will face its own Olympian challenge this year too.
30 July 2012
Fraser Smart, managing director at Buck Consultants walks us through the effects that quantitative easing has on pension schemes and pensioners - are they seen as collateral damage?
06 July 2012
It's been an even more exciting week than usual for actuaries.
26 April 2012
A.A. Latimer might not have meant for the quote to be used in last week's parliamentary setting but it certainly applies. No real surprises; we're broke and we need to save money.
28 March 2012
The DWP has asked whether NEST should be the default provider for millions of small pension pots - are they mad?
01 March 2012
It's nothing personal, but I don't think the red button on the TV remote will make the final cut when the list of great 21st century inventions is announced.
22 February 2012
Transport-related metaphors spring up all the time when analysts and commentators talk about business practices.
15 February 2012
A collective cold shudder of fear went through the City last week after seeing Fred Goodwin being stripped of his Knighthood and RBS execs give up on their bonus. "So were will this leave us?" you could almost hear executives whispering on the freezing streets of London. Well, as far as possible action from the Government goes, I would not worry too much if I were you.
06 February 2012
This is a public service announcement...with guitars! Thus screeched Joe Strummer on the Clash's 1982 "Know Your Rights", if not the best rock intro in history, then definitely one of the better ones.
25 January 2012
The Italian cruise ship Costa Concordia ran aground last week, killing several passengers and crew members. But the disaster could have been averted
19 January 2012
You may have noticed that Pension Funds Online looks a bit different. That's because we've been hard at work here at Wilmington on improving the services we offer you. The result is the new Pension Funds Online website, which offers users better functionality and more data
02 December 2011
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