UK - The latest round of valuations at the Local Government Pension Scheme have sparked fears that council employers will pay more for their workers' pensions.
Average contribution rates have risen by 1% and 3% respectively at two of the more healthy schemes, Tameside and the London Pension Fund Authority. The rates at these two schemes now stand at 9% and 12%.
Other schemes disclosing increased rates include the Cumbria pension fund, where rates increased 0.7% to 14.7%.
West Midlands has bucked the trend, by showing an increased solvency rate of 1.5% at the same as decreasing contributions for its major employers by an average of 1.4%.
West Midlands Pension Fund chief pensions officer Mike Woodall said: “Because we realised that the market was over-priced in 1998 we put a reserve in to cover the majority of any anticipated falls. Also our employers are giving detailed consideration to the financial implications of early retirement before approving them.”
The Tameside scheme also said that it was able to reduce contribution rates further to an average of 7.9% from 8.8% last year. But this figure included some employers who were paying reduced contributions for early retirements.
Valuation results so far show that West Yorkshire is the most solvent scheme and the London Borough of Newham has the lowest valuation rate. Full valuation figures of all local authorities will be released next month.
By Jonathan Stapleton
Jonathan Stapleton asks whether newly-accredited professional trustees should be a statutory fixture on pension scheme boards.
Savers are being warned by the Insolvency Service to guard their pension pots from investment scammers and negligent trustees as it winds up 24 companies.
Respondents say they should only be required in certain situations as the system is not broken.