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Brexit to fuel demand for UK pensions to be moved

30 June 2016

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Brexit will be a trigger for people to move their British pensions out of the UK, according to deVere Group CEO Nigel Green.

Speaking after last week's EU referendum results, Green said: "As the reality of what the Leave result in the referendum means for personal finances sinks in, people will now be reassessing their retirement planning strategy."

Green added that he fully expected demand for HMRC-recognised overseas pension transfers to be further boosted thanks to the UK's decision to leave the European Union.

"Due to the huge amount of uncertainty that has been created, more people who are able to do so, will be seeking to safeguard their retirement funds by transferring them into a secure, regulated, English speaking jurisdiction outside the UK," he said.

Uncertainty has rocked the financial industry since last week's result, including a drop in the value of the pound and significant amounts lost from the FTSE 100.

UK pension deficits hit a record level of £935bn on Monday this week, according to pensions consultancy Hymans Robertson.

The low was due to falling yields as a result of the 'flight to safety' after the Brexit vote, the company said.

It follows weeks of plummeting deficits and a sustained period of volatility for pensions.

However, Patrick Bloomfield, partner at Hymans Robertson, said schemes should avoid a knee jerk reaction to market volatility.

He said: "One of the biggest factors that will determine whether or not pensions are paid to scheme members in full will be the health of the sponsoring company post Brexit and this should be a primary consideration when making funding decisions for DB schemes."

Long-term planning will be essential for schemes as the aftermath of the Brexit vote continues.

Allan Mellor, managing director of Cheshire-based chartered financial planner Philip Bates & Co, said he has been cautioning clients not to be overly concerned.

He said although the FTSE100 went down and the pound decreased in value against the dollar, the reaction was moderate.

"The moderate reaction reflects the market's confidence that the change to our political position will not have a major impact on performance," he said.

First published 30.06.2016