View more on these topics

The role of The Pensions Regulator

Regarding the article headed Dual-regulation fears for pension companies (Money Marketing, February 1), the consultation on how The Pensions Regulator intends to regulate definedcontribution schemes does not set out to “expand our remit”. It is already part of our remit under the Pensions Act 2004 to regulate occupational DC schemes and group personal pensions as well as ensuring employers provide stakeholder schemes.

Regarding the issues raised over potential “dual regulation”, the FSA has little direct regulatory responsibility for trust-based occupational schemes.

The areas of interest for the FSA include sales, marketing and prudential management. The Pensions Regulator’s remit involves employer payments and scheme administration. A key part of our regulatory approach is working with other regulatory bodies and industry partners.

The article states that, under the proposals, we will “have the power to ban trustees.” In fact, we already have this and other powers as set out in legislation. The consultation does not, and could not, change these powers, as this is a matter for Parliament. The consultation seeks to increase clarity on when we would use these powers in the DC environment.

We address the risk of unduly high charges as these can have an impact on members’ benefits and should be proportionate, provide value for money and be transparent. We simply ask that charges are considered at scheme set-up and at regular periods and that information be issued showing the impact of costs on the scheme.

Regarding the concern that savings will be invested in gilts, it is not part of our role to tell trustees or providers what they should invest in and this will be a decision for them dependent on the circumstances.

Our focus is on there being effective processes for the preparation of investment mandates, selection of investment advisers and performance monitoring.

John Ashcroft,
Head of strategy,
The Pensions Regulator


Little treasures

Lack of scrutiny means there are some real gems waiting to be unearthed in the small-cap market.

100M in lending for Shariah firm

Shariah-compliant financial services specialist Alburaq has approved over 100m-worth of mortgage business and expects the Islamic mortgage market to grow to over 1bn by 2009.

Personal accounts pose huge liability risk for Government

The Government is taking a colossal political risk with personal accounts and will not avoid liability if the default fund fails to perform, warn leading pension commentators.Debbie Harrison, a senior visiting fellow at the Pension Institute of Cass Business School, says nine million employees, typically low to medium-earners, will be swept into personal accounts in […]

Shades of mid-green for M&S Money fund

HSBC subsidiary Marks & Spencer Money has introduced a manager of managers ethical fund to be run by the HSBC multi-manager team headed by James Hughes.


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm