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Latest Pensions News

The latest news on pensions, the pensions industry, and retirement planning:

July 16, 2012

ABI says Labour’s pension warning is misleading

by Jan Harris
ABI says Labour’s pension warning is misleading
A new report by the Labour Party on pensions has been criticised by the Association of British Insurers (ABI) as badly timed and misleading. The report, by shadow work and pensions secretary Liam Byrne, supports earlier comments by Ed Miliband that pension fees and charges could erode half of a retiree’s pension fund. The Labour Party is calling for pension charges to ...




July 11, 2012

Fund managers’ charges eroding some pensions

by Jan Harris
Fund managers’ charges eroding some pensions
The charges levied by some fund managers could be eroding defined contribution pension schemes by up to 17 per cent, according to a report by the National Audit Office (NAO). The watchdog is calling for fund managers to be more accountable for how they manage the schemes, following a study into the regulation of defined contribution (DC) pensions. The NAO found that ...




June 19, 2012

A quarter of over-50s will delay retirement

by Jan Harris
A quarter of over-50s will delay retirement
Saga, which provides finance products exclusively for the over 50s, claims that more than a quarter of people in this age group will work past the current state pension age of 65. Based on 427,000 retirement dates given by people using its annuity service, 27 per cent of over 50s will work beyond the age of 65. Last year 1.41 million ...




June 13, 2012

Number of pensioners in the workplace doubles

by Jan Harris
Number of pensioners in the workplace doubles
The number of people continuing to work after reaching retirement age has increased by 85 percent, from 753,000 in 1993 to 1.4 million in 2011, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The ONS said this was due to a number of factors, including improved health and wellbeing for older people, with many of them wanting to continue to ...




June 8, 2012

Retirement income lowest for five years

by Jan Harris
Retirement income lowest for five years
The gap between the value of pensions received by men and women has narrowed, according to a survey by the Prudential. While this looks like good news on the surface, women are only catching up with men because the average male annual pension has fallen in value, rather than because women’s retirement income has increased. Taking into account all retirement income, women ...




June 1, 2012

Agreement reached over council pensions

by Jan Harris
Agreement reached over council pensions
After months of talks, employers and trade unions have agreed to introduce career-average pension schemes for all 1.6 million local authority employees. The proposed new scheme, known as LGPS 2014, would start in 2014 as the name suggests. It would require higher paid staff to contribute significantly more to their pension than they do at present. The deal must now be ratified by ...




May 21, 2012

More people failing to save for retirement

by Jan Harris
More people failing to save for retirement
The proportion of people with no pension savings has grown from 20 per cent to 22 per cent over the past year, according to Scottish Widows' latest survey. The pension provider surveyed 5,200 adults in the UK, aged 30 or over, and earning at least £10,000 a year, for its annual review of pensions. Ian Naismith, head of pensions market development at ...




May 9, 2012

Queen’s Speech outlines pension changes

by Jan Harris
Queen's Speech outlines pension changes
The Queen’s Speech has outlined plans to introduce a flat-rate state pension in England, Scotland and Wales and to automatically increase the pension age in line with longevity. A new flat-rate of £140 will replace the current full state pension, which stands at £107.45 a week, but can increase to £137.35 with pension credit. The flat rate is designed to eliminate the current ...




May 8, 2012

Further increase in private-sector pension deficit

by Jan Harris
Further increase in private-sector pension deficit
New reports suggest that the deficit of private-sector, final-salary, pension schemes has increased again, with industry experts suggesting that this type of pension may have disappeared by 2020. The latest figures from the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), which provides compensation to members of eligible defined benefit pension schemes if an employer becomes insolvent, show that the deficit increased to £217bn in April, compared ...




April 25, 2012

Over-50s face 11-year retirement delay

by Jan Harris
Over-50s face 11-year retirement delay
People over the age of 50 will need to work for a further 11 years after they reach state pension age according to a new report. The Pensions Policy Institute claims that those who are unable to carry on working will struggle to maintain their standard of living. The report suggests that a single person will need £211 per week minimum to ...




April 18, 2012

Public sector pension strike planned for May

by Jan Harris
Public sector pension strike planned for May
A further strike against the government’s proposals to reform public sector pensions is expected next month. The dispute has continued for a year now, with a million public sector workers from a number of unions taking part in a general strike in November. Members of The Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) and health union Unite are now expected to down ...




April 12, 2012

Firms mislead consumers with pension projections

by Jan Harris
Firms mislead consumers with over-generous pension projections
The Financial Services Authority (FSA) is calling for pension and insurance providers to reduce the estimates of returns used when marketing their products. The regulator warns that firms are using over-generous forecasts which could be misleading for consumers. It wants them to reduce the estimates of returns on investment products by at least 0.5 percent, following an independent study by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. ...




April 10, 2012

Government may tax state pension at source

by Jan Harris
Government may tax state pension at source
As part of its plans to simplify the tax system the Government may start taxing State Pensions before they are paid out. Pensioners whose taxable income, including their State Pension, exceeds their tax-free personal allowance, still have to pay income tax, although it is estimated that only 40 per cent of pensioners realise that their State Pension is taxable. Out of the ...




April 4, 2012

One in six retirees relying on state pension

by Jan Harris
One in six retirees relying on state pension
New research by Prudential shows that one in six people retiring this year will rely solely on their state pension because they have no workplace pension to supplement their income. The Prudential’s ‘Class of 2012’ survey into the retirement plans of nearly 10,000 people highlighted that women are more than twice as likely as men to have only their state ...




March 27, 2012

Auto-enrolment aligned with tax and NI

by Jan Harris
Auto-enrolment aligned with tax and NI
The government revealed today that automatic enrolment rates for the tax year to April 2013 will be aligned with tax and National Insurance thresholds to make implementation simple for firms. Auto-enrolment is being phased in from 1 October, starting with the largest firms, and should be in full effect by the middle of 2017. It will mean that workers will be automatically ...




March 21, 2012

Budget brings bad news for pensioners

by Jan Harris
Budget brings bad news for pensioners
Changes announced in today’s budget mean that four million pensioners will be worse off. The budget included controversial proposals to lower the income tax allowance for people over 65 to £9,205 from April. This will bring pensioners in line with the general population. The over 65s currently benefit from a more generous tax-free allowance of £10,500, which will be frozen for ...




March 14, 2012

Tesco raises pension age to 67

by Jan Harris
Tesco raises pension age to 67
Supermarket retailer Tesco has increased its pension age by two years to 67 for the 170,000 employees who contribute to the company’s scheme. Tesco employees will still be able to retire from the age of 55 at a reduced pension rate, but they will only receive a full pension if they work until 67. The retailer has also decided to use the ...




March 9, 2012

Strikes threatened as public sector pension talks conclude

by Jan Harris
Strikes threatened as public sector pension talks conclude
Talks over public sector pensions have now ended with the government producing a final set of proposals. While the Treasury said the talks were constructive, unions claim that ‘serious matters’ have been left unresolved, leading to the threat of further industrial action. The proposed changes to health, education and civil service pensions are designed to save the government billions ...




March 8, 2012

Pensioners hammered by QE and rising living costs

by Jan Harris
Pensioners hammered by QE and rising living costs
The value of final salary pension schemes has been slashed by £90 billion due to the government’s latest round of quantitative easing (QE), the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) warns, while pensioners' incomes have also been hit by soaring living costs. A new study by LV= suggest that pensioners’ day-to-day living costs have increased by 33 per cent since ...




Second salvo of QE knocks £90bn off pensions funds

by Brian Turner
Second salvo of QE knocks £90bn off pensions funds
Falling gilt yields have pushed final salary pension funds £90bn deeper into the red since the second wave of quantitative easing (QE) started last October, pension experts said today. The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) said the Bank of England’s printing of £125bn within the past six months had hit pension funds harder than expected - and will ...