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Altmann slams Govt for pension inequalities

Pensions expert Ros Altmann has slammed the Government for protecting bankers’ pensions but leaving other workers to fend for themselves if their company fails.

The pensions of workers at Northern Rock, Bradford and Bingley, RBS, HBOS and Lloyds are 100 per cent protected by taxpayers while all other workers’ pensions have no taxpayer protection at all, says Altmann.

She is calling on the Government to ensure all workers have the same level of taxpayer protection rather than singling out certain groups for special treatment.

Altmann says: “The Government is still ignoring the social and financial impact of pension inequalities as with public sector pensions.

“The Northern Rock pension deficit alone is over £100m. Bradford and Bingley’s deficit is another £100m. Taxpayers will apparently have to pay all of this. And that’s before we consider RBS, HBOS or Lloyds, where the deficits are over £4bn.

“This raises a wider issue of fairness and social justice. It seems that policymakers consider bankers are a superior class of worker.

“The Government has not provided any justification for this unequal treatment and one has to question whether policymakers have a sufficient grasp of financial reality when it comes to pensions.”

Altmann says the situation is reminiscent of the Government’s disinterest in the mounting public sector pension liabilities.

She says: “The fact that pensions have to be paid out over a long time horizon, does not mean the costs can be ignored.

“Taxpayer funds are being committed on a massive scale to substantial long-term commitments, without any budgeting in place to ensure the money is set aside to pay the costs.

“In its panic to shore up the banks, the Government has failed to factor in the substantial sums involved in pensions.”

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Comments

There are 4 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Altmann slams Govt for pension inequalities
    And, of course, this approach can be seen quite clearly in the way the FSA makes little more than the merest token of effort to regulate the banks’ activities in the financial services sector. If Hector Sants was a man of true integrity and backbone, he would stand up to the Treasury and tell them that unless it stops hampering with the FSA’s performance of what are supposed to be its statutory duties, he will resign and blow the whole sorry consiracy wide open. Just a thought.

  2. Right on the Nail
    As per usual Ros Altmann is right on the nail when it comes to pensions. Such inequality is tantamount to riding rough shod over all other sector pensions. This government just doesn’t have a clue when it comes to pensions.

  3. Protected bankers!
    Yes, some of the banks have moved into the public sector as far as pensions are concerned. But better still they are probably on 40/60ths rather than the 40/80ths of true public sector workers.

    Banks have always been at the centre of the economy and have abused this ‘cannot be allowed to fail’ position.

    Now lets have some fun and move on to something I think will be really controversial. I would love to know if anyone else thinks there is mileage in this idea.

    If, as has been proved to be the case, UK banks have this unwritten guarantee of the whole of the UK economy behind them, underpinning their business, should they not pay for that guarantee, perhaps by some form of additional Tax?

    This would have to be on ALL UK banks, not just the ones that have had to take advantage of the guarantee, after all if RBS, HBOS, NR, B & B had been allowed to fail where would the others now be?

  4. altmann salms gov
    very clear and informative…i like the social justice bit…goverment elected people are sopposed to tbe servsnt to all and look after all, the bankers have done enough damage from what i read in the media…so to preseve them is to reward them for thier incompetance…disadvanting this groupg would bring home the realities of theri decsion making..instead hedgin ghtem in..we need to have systems within our democracy that can chek the decisoins o the elected politician..becuse they appear to have too much rein and literally reign like elected king and queens…where is the service bit we here befor eth evoting…the public have the power to be served equitably and fairly…so to stop this abuse…of resources, perhaps the pliticians shoiuld be paid a miinumum wage that way we wil atract society caring leaders of a higher callibare…

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