UK - According to a report by FairPensions, the UK has recognised the need to address environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, but many well known companies are still dragging their feet on climate change and human rights.
FairPensions warned the government may therefore be forced to make such disclosure mandatory, which it has the power to do under the Companies Act. Half of the schemes examined had no official policy on ESG issues.
Indeed, a number of funds said that ESG was the responsibility of fund managers and only 25% of the schemes could demonstrate an actual implementation of an effective ESG policy.
In terms of social responsibility, public pension funds such as local authority schemes and the Universities Superannuation Scheme were praised for their commitment to ESG issues, while by contrast, banking sector pension schemes were criticised for a lack of engagement on this.
FairPensions said this was surprising, as the banking sector generally had a good record on corporate responsibilities. Alex van der Velden, executive director of FairPensions said: "We are pleased to see that some funds are now recognising the value of responsible investment and accountability, but concerned that others haven't yet woken up to these issues and we hope these funds do wake up in time to avoid the next Enron-style shock."
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.