INCLUDING: NETHERLANDS - Mn Services and Syntrus Achmea alliance; UK - Duke Street Capital contributes to Focus pension scheme; US - Corporate DB provision on the wane; UK - Trustee toolkit seen as a positive
NETHERLANDS - Mn Services and Syntrus Achmea alliance
Pension organisations Syntrus Achmea and Mn Services have announced they have entered into "intensive talks" in the near future to merge into a single pension administrator and asset manager.
The alliance between Mn Services and Syntrus Achmea could create the largest pension administrator in the Netherlands in terms of the number of participants and company pension funds and the second largest in respect of asset management.
UK - Duke Street Capital contributes to Focus pension scheme
Following the recent intervention of the Pension Regulator, private equity firm Duke Street Capital has made an £8m contribution into the Focus DIY pension schemes a year after selling the Focus DIY Group.
The pension deficit at April 2007 in respect of the two Focus schemes was around £32m (US$56m), while in 2005 it was approximately £26m (US$45.8m). This increase triggered a Financial Support Direction action by the Pension Regulator.
US - Corporate pension provision on the wane
Traditional corporate defined benefit pension schemes in the US are losing popularity and have never been more at risk, according to a report from the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI).
It revealed that in 1975, 43% of corporate employees had pension provision but that statistic has now plummeted to under a quarter (20%).
The EBRI claimed if the decline of corporate pension provision continued, it could potentially mean employees reach the retirement without enough funds to do so.
UK - Trustee toolkit seen as a positive
UK - The trustee toolkit launched by the Pension Regulator (tPR) has been praised by lay trustees of defined benefit (DB) and defined contribution (DC) in research as highly effective.
Those who used the training toolkit said it was well designed, relevant and easy to use, which contributed to their own knowledge and made a 'positive difference' to running schemes.
A DB scheme trustee who completed the toolkit commented: "I thought it was highly professional, better than I had expected. I liked the multimedia aspect of it and being able to work at my own pace. I thought the case studies and the reference material were excellent."
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