One of the questions we have unsurprisingly been asked most at the start of 2016 is over the ramifications of a potential exit of Great Britain from the European Union later this year. At least we now have some certainty, as David Cameron returned from mammoth and sleep-shattering (shouldn’t that be inducing?) discussions with a “deal” and called for a referendum on the UK’s position with Europe on 23rd June 2016. Ironically, at the time of the vote I will be in France having probably suffered watching England getting knocked out of the European Championships by Slovakia. It will probably be better than being here, given how tedious much of the coverage has already become…..Read more
Aside from the drama of the launch of the EU Referendum campaigns, the last few weeks have also seen two key European pensions developments. On 25 January 2016, the European Parliament voted on amendments to the revised IORP (Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provision) Directive, whilst the following day EIOPA (the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority) published the results of its first stress tests into pensions. This briefing note looks at where these developments leave European pensions policy.
As we approach the Budget, the prospect of a complete re-vamp of the current pension savings system looms large. Steve Webb, the former Pensions Minister is one of an increasing number of people who think that George Osborne is about to replace the current pension savings system with “Pension ISAs”. This would see an end to tax-relief on contributions made to pension funds. Instead, individuals would be able to draw their retirement savings tax-free. The unfortunate (or perhaps not so unfortunate from the Chancellor’s perspective) consequence of introducing such a change would be to eliminate one of the greatest attractions and most well understood aspect of pension savings – the tax-free cash lump sum…..Read more
Employers are getting more hands-on in setting the investment strategy for the schemes they sponsor, with 69% saying they now take a more active role, according to research published today by Punter Southall….read more