View more on these topics

Laws looks at pension costs

The LibDems will be scrutinising the economics of all their pension policies, including the citizen’s pension, in the coming months as they look to challenge the Government.

Shadow Work and Pensions secretary David Laws told Money Marketing at the conference in Blackpool that he would be taking a break to formulate future policy.

Laws says the difficulty is not just costing the party’s policies but benchmarking them against other proposals, especially when the Government has made unrealistic projections about not raising the percentage of GDP spent on pensions.

Challenged about the financial burden of a citizen’s pension, Laws says although the proposals may look expensive, the costs of an alternative could be higher.

He says he believes that the citizen’s pension should run alongside individuals having the opportunity and respon- sibility to save for themselves and share risk with the Government.

Laws says the LibDem pension message should be about empowerment and a liberal approach compared with Gordon Brown’s “clever people” in Whitehall and an “incredibly paternalistic Government”.

He is concerned that the Government will raise the pension age as an attempt to solve problems on the cheap and suggests that an independent body could be set up to assess when ages should rise, although the final decision must rest with politicians.

Laws also says the LibDem tax review will look at scrapping the 25 per cent tax-free lump sum benefit, as even some of the most free-market and low-tax organisations argue the rule is anomalous and a huge unjustified tax giveaway.

Laws says: “I am going to be going away with an entire stack of documents about the economics of pensions to think about this very complex issue and how to fund it.”


Special delivery

At first sight, you may think it is madness to offer a house-price-linked plan at this stage in the housing market cycle. However, once you have got to grips with the concept and its potential uses, the new Abbey plan stacks up well. It has an investment term of 10 years and on maturity aims […]

Middle England is done for, says Bee

Middle England will be left to fend for itself and will be worst hit by the pension saving crisis, pension guru Steve Bee warned delegates at Money Marketing Live in Manchester. Scottish Life’s head of pensions strategy said people on wages close to the national average will be the worst hit because they do not […]

JO Hambro sets up US fund for Roe-Ely

JO Hambro Capital Management is setting up an American growth fund to be run by former Tilney fund manager Nick Roe-Ely. The fund launches on October 31 and will have a concentrated portfolio of 30-50 stocks and will be capped at 500m to give Roe-Ely the flexibility needed for his high-conviction, growth-orientated investment style. The […]

Co-op advisers back a strike

Advisers at Co-op Insurance Agency have voted 2-1 to strike over employment contracts which they say could lead to pay cuts of up to 30 per cent.


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment