Rate rises boost annuity demand

Pensions-savings-retirement-piggy bank

Rising annuity rates have help pushed up advisers’ interest in securing contracts for clients, figures from Iress show.

The technology provider records the number of key facts illustrations, which are used to generate annuity quotes, being produced by advisers.

In June the number of KFIs produced rose 32 per cent compared to April, and was up 14 per cent year-on-year.

Since the 2014 Budget annuity sales have dropped dramatically and in April demand were down 30 per cent year-on-year.

But the average rate of a single life annuity reached a new six month high in June 2015, hitting 5.09 per cent, compared to 4.86 per cent in March.

Iress says the rise is due to improving economic data and gilt yields pushed up by the expectation of base rate rises.

Average pots sizes used to purchase an annuity also increased, to £67,504, a 5 per cent increase on March and 3 per cent year-on-year.

Iress commercial executive general manager Dave Miller says: “Pension freedoms hit annuity activity hard in April, as those at retirement rushed to explore alternative options.

“In the months that have followed, the mini-bounceback points to demand stabilising, buoyed by improving rates.

“However, with further changes in the market on the cards – not to mention new investment and hybrid products likely to launch – we have not seen the end of disruption and innovation in the retirement market.”