UK - Employers have hit back at union claims of "boardroom hypocrisy" over final salary pension provision.
The TUC’s Pensions Watch survey accused company bosses of “feathering their pension nests” with nearly three-quarters still enjoying final salary schemes while many workers had to put up with “inferior” defined contribution plans.
The Institute of Directors has already voiced its concerns over the findings and now the Confederation of British Industries has shown its disquiet.
CBI deputy director-general John Cridland claimed senior executives’ pensions were equally under threat with the £1.4m cap causing “great concern”.
He added: “We are not aware of evidence that executive pensions are uniquely protected from the realities of increased costs and pressures on pension provision.”
The TUC said 58% of the 121 companies it surveyed had closed their defined benefit schemes to new staff while still operating a final salary scheme for new directors.
The TUC said this was causing a “deep and growing divide” between the types of benefits staff could expect and those offered to directors.
Company bosses were also accused of hypocrisy for suggesting DC schemes were favourable for people who frequently moved jobs.
The TUC pointed out that, on average, executives only served three-year tenures and yet still retained DB plans.
And the IoD claimed its own survey – which is soon to be released – covered four times as many companies as the TUC report and showed only one-third offered different pensions for senior staff.
Pensions executive Derek Brownlee said the real gulf was between the public and private sectors.
He said: “If the TUC really wants to end ‘hypocrisy’ in pensions it could start by embracing a fairly modest reform of public sector pensions, aligning the retirement age in the public sector with the rest of the workforce.”
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