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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2006): Pensions - UK

B. Hall & N. Timmins

Financial Times, February 7th 2006, p.2

Work and Pensions Secretary Hutton is to announce that an overall increase in the retirement age is inevitable in 2020, the date by which the pension age for all women will have been raised from 60 to 65, but that it would require more attractive returns to be accepted. The announcement is seen as signalling support from the Work and Pensions Department for the Turner Commission proposals, which is likely trigger arguments with the Treasury over affordability. The article touches on other criticisms of Pension Commission recommendations.

T. Hatton and J. Whyte
Pensions International, issue 78, 2006, p.8-9

A recent survey has shown that people in the UK know what they want from pensions and are ready to take responsibility for getting it, but lack information to make realistic plans. Article calls on the financial services industry to rise to the challenge of providing appropriate advice at an affordable cost.

N. Timmins

FinancialTtimes, February 21st 2006, p.5

The Association of Consulting Actuaries proposes retrospective changes to pension age, with fifteen years notice, to help employers maintain occupational schemes and share investment risk. Turner’s National Pension Saving Scheme plans are criticised fiercely as inequitable and threatening to the availability of occupational schemes as the number of contributors to private pensions hits a record low.

C. Farnish

Financial Times, February 8th 2006, p.17

A pluralist solution, with large-scale, not-for-profit, defined-contribution super- trusts run by experts and governed for the benefit of members, limiting investment risk and kept transparent by a permanent pension commission, could be better than the proposed National Pension Savings Scheme which would simply act as an umbrella for millions of schemes without providing consumer advice and with potentially disappointing end results. A pension fund association CEO asks why the Turner Commission did not look harder at large scale trust schemes.

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