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Hopes and fears for pensions in 2024

Aon has set out its “hopes and fears” for pensions in 2024. After a year in which UK pension schemes digested the events of 2022 and adjusted themselves to new circumstances, Matthew Arends, partner and head of UK retirement policy at Aon, looks at what the pension industry may have on its mind as it goes into 2024. “All those involved in running pension schemes may have mixed feelings as they face the New Year"

Posted on Tuesday Nov 28

Oblivian Coalmine on pension funds fossil fuel industry ties

This new film from Make My Money Matter, starring the Academy Award winner Olivia Colman, highlights that £88 billion of UK pension savers money is invested in fossil fuels. Richard Curtis, Co-Founder of Make My Money Matter, commented: I’ve seen some dark, dystopian characters in my career, and that doesn’t even include Hugh Grant in Love Actually. But I think Oblivia Coalmine is right up there with the worst. People across the UK want their money to help our planet, not harm it and all our pension schemes must now pay attention and take immediate and urgent action.

Posted on Tuesday Nov 28

The lifetime pension model

In the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement Jeremy Hunt launched a call for evidence for a ‘pot for life’, also known as the lifetime pension model. As part of the Government’s wider Mansion House reforms, the pot for life will give savers "a legal right to require a new employer to pay pension contributions into their existing pension pot if they choose, meaning people can move to having one pension pot for life. The proposal has created a polarisation of views in the industry and a myriad of questions that must be answered by the consultation as a matter of urgency.
Posted on Monday Nov 27

TPR on Autumn Statement proposals to boost value for money

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) reacts to announcements including a review of the master trust regime and responses to consultations/calls for evidence on small pots, decumulation and pension trustee skills. TPR has welcomed measures to enhance the quality of the pensions industry, support innovation and ensure savers are protected and get good value.
Posted on Friday Nov 24

Consultation on reforms to the Matching Adjustment framework

Head of Regulatory Advisory Craig Turnbull introduces BW's in-depth response to the Prudential Regulation Authority's (PRA's) consultation paper on reforms to the Matching Adjustment (MA) framework. CP19/23 proposes reforms to several different and important aspects of the current Matching Adjustment (MA) regulatory system. Whilst many of these proposed reforms advance both the PRA’s and the government’s objectives, there are some important aspects of the reforms relating to the MA attestation that result in unnecessary ambiguity.
Posted on Thursday Nov 23

AI to reignite global M and A market in 2024

With interest rates stabilising and a pick-up in deal activity after a muted first half in 2023 fuelling cautious optimism, WTW looks at the trends to shape the M&A landscape in 2024. Historic levels of inflation, rising interest rates and geopolitical instability contributed to a slump in deal activity that bottomed out in the second quarter of 2023. Since then more dealmakers have returned to the negotiation table, with global deal completions increasing by 16% during July to September, according to research from WTW’s Quarterly Deal Performance Monitor (QDPM).
Posted on Tuesday Nov 21

Autumn Statement will be pivotal for pensions and investment

Positive inflation figures and economic updates from OBR will provide backdrop to potential future tax cuts and next April’s triple lock decision. Next steps on bumper pack of Mansion House pension and investment proposals expected. Potential reforms of ISA regime. Consultation expected on new approach to defining financial advice and guidance. Hopes for more time to implement complex removal of pensions lifetime allowance
Posted on Monday Nov 20

Actuarial Post Awards 2023 Vote Now

Welcome to the 2023 Actuarial Post Awards. We have been celebrating and rewarding talent and achievements of individuals in the actuarial arena since 2012. We would like to thank our sponsors who continue to support the awards, this year Aon's Strategy and Technology Group sponsor Actuary of the Year and Bolton Associates sponsor GI Actuary of the Year. Sustainability Actuary of the Year is sponsored by Star Actuarial Futures. You have continued to surprise your colleagues by nominating them for one of our awards. The nominations are now in, the finalists are waiting for your votes.
Posted on Friday Nov 17

A framework for increasing auto enrolment contributions

Phoenix Group calls for new Statutory Duty for Government, as major report sets out economic framework for increasing automatic enrolment contributions
Posted on Thursday Nov 16

TPR on helping savers to access their DC pensions savings

Nobel Prize-winning economist William Sharpe once described accessing pension savings as the “nastiest, hardest problem in finance”. Indeed, converting pensions into retirement income requires savers to make complex decisions, and the associated risks rest with them – not their pension scheme nor their employer. This is complicated further as most trust-based DC pensions schemes in the UK do not offer any decumulation services. Others provide only limited choice, forcing savers to transfer, unadvised, into the retail sector.
Posted on Thursday Nov 16

Pension hopes for the 2023 Autumn Statement

Hymans Robertson comment on what they hope the Government will say about pensions in the Autumn Statement, especially as the Mansion House Reform consultation responses are expected to be published and TPR’s DB Funding Code confirmed. Overall we hope the Chancellor is bold and creative towards forging a better saving and investment environment aligned with wider societal aims
Posted on Wednesday Nov 15

How to use an Outsourced Chief Investment Officer

With the adoption of OCIO growing in popularity for different types of investors, you might be thinking about whether your investments should be managed under this model. Here, we look at some of the pros and cons of the OCIO investment governance model, as well as the practicalities of putting it in place. OCIO is an investment governance approach adopted by a range of investor types, including pension schemes, insurance companies, charities, endowments, investment trusts and family offices.
Posted on Tuesday Nov 14

Financial advisers in the modern world

I was in a reflective mood this week. Financial advice has changed a lot during my 30 years in the industry and it’s not all about regulation. Cultural shifts have a distinct part to play in the changing dynamic between the adviser and those being advised. Mutual trust In the beginning there was the insurance salesman (yes, I know insurance goes all the way back to the Babylonians, but even I am not old enough to remember that).
Posted on Saturday Nov 11

Last day of voting on Stars of the Future 2023

It's the your last chance to vote for our nominees in this years Stars of the Future as we close voting tonight. It’s vital to remember that we all started somewhere and becoming an actuary is no easy feat. We relish in acknowledging the emerging talent within the actuarial market and celebrate the ones to watch with our Stars of the Future Awards. Sponsored by Star Actuarial Futures. Stars of the Future highlights the rising talent in the actuarial industry. We know how hard you all work to qualify as actuaries and this is the perfect way to acknowledge your hard work.
Posted on Friday Nov 10

Making the most of upcoming auto enrolment changes

For the gardeners and plant lovers amongst us, we can all remember growing our first plant. Getting a nice plant pot, setting the soil and paying attention to the plant over time as it tries to grow. My first plant grew well, but perhaps not as big as it could have been – perhaps I didn’t give it enough sunlight or perhaps I should have watered it more? In September 2023 the Pensions (Extension of Automatic Enrolment) Act 2023 received royal assent, which gives the government the power to make a few notable changes to auto-enrolment
Posted on Thursday Nov 9

Does the winner take it all

Technology and the internet have had a dramatic effect on society. Primarily, this is by making information (and communication) cheap, and explosively increasing the amount of each. In many ways, it has furthered inequalities, and for marketplace businesses, such as Uber, Air B&B, and Facebook, scale begets scale. If you want to sell your wares, you go to the market with the most buyers- and if you want to buy, you go to the market with the most sellers. A handful of giants then start to dominate, the simple fact of their size being a huge advantage in and of itself.
Posted on Wednesday Nov 8

A Fresh Focus on Renewals

The proportion of people in the U.K. deciding to switch personal insurance provider fell to its lowest level in a decade last June . The on-going cost of living crisis and sustained cost pressures may well cause an uptick in consumers shopping around, however, the growth we have seen in use of data enrichment at renewal looks like it’s here to stay. As analysts predict that premiums are set for an 11% rise in 2024 , it has become essential to create a cohesive view of a customer’s needs to offer the fairest quote possible at renewal.
Posted on Monday Nov 6

The impact of AI and the challenge of capabilities gaps

"If insurers adapt a new technology like Artificial Intelligence and still carry on working in the same ways they did ten years ago, the value of that technology now is not being leveraged", states Pravina Ladva, Swiss Re's Chief Digital & Technology Officer. In the conversation with Sabine VanderLinden, Managing Partner & CEO Alchemy Crew, Swiss Re's GDTO Pravina explores how the industry can solve challenges like inadequate data capabilities and create a win-win collaboration with insurtechs.
Posted on Friday Nov 3

Private asset valuation and the upcoming FCA review

Recently, the FT reported that the FCA would be launching a review of the way investment funds value private assets. The FCA’s CEO Nikhil Rathi, subsequently confirmed that his agency was planning a sweeping review of valuations used across private markets. The government has been pushing for UK institutions to use more private assets in portfolios. For those initiatives to be successful, and fair to investors, we all need more confidence in the value of those private assets.
Posted on Friday Nov 3

Three pension predictions and a wish

With the Autumn Statement fast approaching on the 22 November, the rumour mill is in full swing around what Jeremy Hunt could reveal from his red box. David Brooks, Head of Policy at leading independent consultancy Broadstone, looks at three areas impacting the pensions’ world that might make it into the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s Statement in three weeks’ time.
Posted on Thursday Nov 2

CDC pensions and prioritising decumulation solutions

The prospect of Collective Defined Contribution (CDC) pension arrangements in the UK has been on the horizon for many years, and the UK Government appears committed to CDC being a part of the pensions landscape in future. Here we discuss why we believe there would be benefits to prioritising development of CDC decumulation solutions. The basic idea of a CDC scheme is relatively simple: defined contributions are paid into a collective fund and pension benefits are paid to members based on what the collective fund can afford.
Posted on Wednesday Nov 1

Four major money laundering trends in the insurance sector

Fraudsters are experts at finding novel ways to launder money. This is evidenced in the variety of ways that dirty money is cleaned, from crypto assets to online auctions. And the insurance industry isn’t immune from illegal acts taking place under its nose. In fact, the PwC Global Economic Crime Survey 2022 found that two-thirds of insurers experienced fraud or financial crime in the previous year. And for criminals, when one door closes, they find a new way in.
Posted on Tuesday Oct 31

Why is the PPF proposing to charge GBP100m of levies

Is the PPF right to propose to raise a £100m levy that it expects it does not need? In this article, we set out why we think it is not and highlight an alternative approach. The £100 million that the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) plans to raise in levies in 2024/25 is half the current year’s levy burden (with the PPF expecting 99% of levy payers to pay less), and a little over a quarter of the amount the PPF set out to raise in 2022/23.
Posted on Monday Oct 30

Final Day for Nominations for the 2023 Actuarial Post Awards

We would like to announce, that after record number of nominations for this years awards that today, Friday 27th November 2023 is the final day for nominations. We would like to thank you once again for joining us as we continue to celebrate and reward the talent and achievements of individuals in the actuarial arena. With 8 awards to be won, make your nominations here for your colleagues, employees and team. Celebrating Actuarial talent since 2012.
Posted on Friday Oct 27

Risk transfer market hits boiling point in 2023

The pensions risk transfer market is busier than ever, and analysis from Barnett Waddingham reveals that both the number and volume of deals are set to hit record highs by the end of 2023. The analysis, run using existing and predicted deal data from the nine major insurers in the sector, confirms that further to the £21bn of bulk annuity deals which took place in H1, with another £20-30bn set to close by the end of the year.
Posted on Thursday Oct 26

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