Government reviews pension enrolment guidelines
The UK government is believed to be reconsidering the level at which employees in the UK would be automatically enrolled into a pension scheme as well as a potential exemption for small companies. The original changes, which would see hundreds of thousands of employees in the UK automatically enrolled into pension schemes, are set to come into play in 2012 although we may see some changes to the original guidelines before then.
The proposed changes could see the threshold for joining such schemes increase from £5,000 per annum to anywhere from £10,000 per annum. The main concern of the government seems to be the possibility that a very small pension fund would in reality simply replace means tested benefits and be of little assistance to low-income workers in the UK. Whether this is the case remains to be seen but the authorities are certainly reconsidering their initial recommendations.
A number of authorities in the UK representing small businesses have been lobbying the government for some time for exemptions for those with fewer than five employees where potentially the cost of setting up the arrangements becomes "non-cost-effective". We are likely to see major changes between now and the proposed introduction date of 2012 with a number of different authorities and bodies around the UK lobbying the government for a number of changes.
Barclays bank set to soften approach regarding pension scheme
The announcement, some weeks ago, that Barclays bank will be closing the company's final salary pension scheme caused anger amongst employees. Not only is the scheme closed to new members (as it has been since 1997) but existing members will be encouraged to transfer to a money purchase scheme with various incentives from the company. The idea is that the existing pension fund deficit will be cove...Read More
CBI calls for public sector pension review
The cost of public sector pensions should be looked into by an independent commission, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) said today.According to the business group, ways of alleviating the burden felt by taxpayers obliged to make up the schemes' liabilities should be looked into.These could include raising the retirement age for government workers, in line with the private sector.Figures...Read More
Is one fund better than another?
It is extremely hard to judge how ‘good’ a pension fund is, because they are all individual and tailored by you. The best pension or investment funds should fit with your own personal exposure to the markets, whether they’re equities, fixed interest or property, amongst others. It’s about how comfortable you feel about investing in certain markets. So, we could have one person with 20%...Read More
Brown takes responsibility for pensions decision
Gordon Brown has accepted full responsibility for changes to pension tax rules made ten years ago, insisting they were the "right decision".It emerged last week that the chancellor had been warned that ending tax relief on share dividends could create a £75 billion pensions black hole.Inland Revenue documents obtained by the Times under the Freedom of Information Act and a Financial Institutions...Read More
Bankruptcy among pensioners sharply rises
01/09/2014 Pensioners in Britain are now more likely to go bankrupt than they were at the height of the recession, even though overall bankruptcy figures have gone down. Due to rising costs and low incomes, accountancy firm Moore Stephens have found that 5,672 pensioners went bankrupt in 2013, up from 4,727 at the height of the recession. There has been a 25% fall in the overall number o...Read More