UK - Pension costs for large firms soared by 6% last year - a rise which far outstrips any other company overhead, show new survey findings to be revealed at today's NAPF conference in Brighton.
The increase is mainly due to additional funding to meet FRS17 requirements and the associated need for extra actuarial services, the findings reveal.
The growing costs of compliance with additional legislation and regulation was a secondary but important factor in rising costs.
Schemes representing a quarter of total UK pension fund assets took part in the survey by pensions administration specialist Capita Hartshead.
The survey's findings also showed that more than half of all company stakeholder schemes have no members while a further 45% have a take-up of less than five employees in 100.
Capita Hartshead business development manager Peter White said this raised serious questions over whether stakeholder was really wanted.
He said: “Nothing the government has done so far has stimulated those people not covered by a second pension.”
White added that it was normal practice for providers to promote their schemes and the government should not be solely blamed for the abysmal uptake of stakeholder.
By contrast the Capita survey showed that uptake of DC schemes has grown by 6% over the last 12 months, while membership of final-salary schemes fell by 8%.
By Simon Meek/ David Rowley
The government is in talks with the UK and Irish pensions regulators over how to protect members of cross-border schemes in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
The equalisation of guaranteed minimum pensions (GMPs) is at least two years away from being completed, and could take longer than four years for some schemes, a poll has found.
The Pensions Regulator will consider if schemes should be required to have professional trustees and assess the case for greater regulation of administrators and system providers, PP can reveal.
UK inflation fell from 2.3% to 2.1% in December, approaching its lowest rate for two years, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).