View more on these topics

Pensions minister rules out single regulator proposal

Steve-Webb-2012-700x450.jpg

Pensions minister Steve Webb has ruled out creating a single pensions regulator despite growing concern that the existing system is not fit for purpose.

Regulation of pensions is currently split between the Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates contract-based schemes, and The Pensions Regulator, which is responsible for regulating all workplace pensions including trust-based DC schemes.

Last month, the influential Work and Pensions select committee published a report warning that persisting with the current framework could lead to “gaps” in regulation, potentially putting members’ savings at risk.

Earlier this week, Labour shadow pensions minister Gregg McClymont said the party is examining whether a single pensions regulator should be established as part of its policy review.

However, in an interview with Money Marketing, Webb says the Government is reluctant to undertake further significant regulatory change following the introduction of the new “twin peaks” regime in April. 

He says: “Clearly we will be considering our response to the select committee. But having literally just reformed the FSA and in the middle of automatic enrolment, more regulatory upheaval doesn’t feel like a priority.

“In the medium-term we will of course keep the regulatory structure under review but this is not the time to be throwing it all up in the air yet again.”

Webb says the Government is, however, considering legislative changes to tackle the growing problem of pensions liberation.

He says: “We are looking at whether the current legislative framework gets us to where we want to be on pensions liberation. It is very much on our agenda at the moment.

“I am also looking at the role of trustees and whether we are giving them enough backing if they think something fishy is going on.”

Recommended

The Technical Quiz: 16 May

To help you to keep up with the fundamentals of tax, retirement and financial planning, try answering these questions. Answers below.

Ageas pre-tax profit up 18% despite protection losses

Ageas UK has reported a 18 per cent rise in pre-tax profits in the first quarter, from £22m in 2012 to £26m this year, as the firm’s protection arm recorded a loss of £306,000. Ageas Protect’s £306,000 Q1 pre-tax loss represents a small improvement on the previous year, when it made a loss of £436,000. […]

Self-build sector suffering from lack of financing

A report into the future of the self-build sector has found that while access to land and planning permissions have eased, applicants still face “considerable constraints” in securing finance. The launch of a joint report between Lloyds Banking Group and the University of York has highlighted a number of obstacles the sector must overcome, particularly […]

DWP bans consultancy charging for auto-enrolment

The Government has moved to ban consultancy charging for automatic enrolment, raising fears that companies will shun advice due to the costs involved. Consultancy charging was devised by the FSA to allow advisers to take a fee from employees’ pension pots for advice given to the employer. In November, the Government launched an “urgent review” […]

US equities: opportunities for short sellers expand

Optimism is as American as baseball and apple pie. And since the financial crisis, being optimistic about US equities has paid off: they have outperformed every other major developed market by a comfortable margin. Yet while there remain plenty of good reasons to be optimistic about US equities, Stephen Moore, manager of the Artemis US […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

There are 2 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. The problem is those of us who stick by the rules and play the game are usually over regulated.

    The unregulated , so called advisers, are the ones that cause the problems by and large, but they appear to get away with all sorts.

    Lets get it sorted please.

  2. @Paul – I agree, these pension liberation firms make a point of not. being regulated and then also a point about them usimmg occupational schemes to transfer to where alternative investments are then placed & “commission rebated” of 10%! unauthorized payment anyone?

Leave a comment