UK - Fears over mass closures of DB pension schemes are exaggerated, a new Jardine Lloyd Thompson survey shows.
In its sixth annual pension survey JLT found that to save its company pension schemes, 61% of employers have increased their contribution rate with 23% of respondents having raised or about to raise employee contributions.
Jardine Lloyd Thompson chief actuarial officer Tim Evans said: “Considering market conditions we might have expected a headlong rush away from traditional final salary schemes.
“But instead of panic we have seen careful and sober tactical adjustment to contribution levels and investment strategy and over three quarters of our respondents still have a final salary scheme.”
The survey – which compiles 240 small, medium and large UK pension schemes – also found that despite the current interest, member communications remained poor.
It found that 82% of respondents thought the industry had problems communicating information to scheme members and that only 19% of schemes had considered conducting a member satisfaction survey.
Further evidence of this was found in the difference between the number of companies providing information online and the number of members that say they can access benefit information online.
JLT technical director June McIntosh explained: “In 2001, 42% of the sample communicated with scheme members via the company intranet or internet.
“It is a surprise to see then that less than 10% of members can access their benefit information online.”
The Brunel Pension Partnership has become the fourth local authority pool to receive the green light from the regulator.
Defined benefit (DB) schemes are to be offered a new consolidator as the former chief of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) launches 'The Pension SuperFund'.
Martin Freeman has been hired as head of technology product and development at Smart Pension, to support the 'growing' technology product side of the business.
Tim Sharp says the government has missed some big opportunities to help workers in the DB white paper.