UK - The pensions regulator has reminded insolvency practitioners of the ramifications of the 2004 Pensions Act, which gives the regulator the statutory role of appointing an independent trustee to a pension scheme where the employer enters insolvency.
Clive Pugh, trustee services manager at the pension regulator said: Insolvency practitioners must comply with the Pensions Act, and ensure that they tell us when a company becomes insolvent.
“We are already having productive talks with the Association of Business Recovery Professionals to raise industry awareness about this issue and we expect that this will increase the number of reports made.
Prior to the Act coming into force in April 2005, insolvency practitioners appointed independent trustees to a pension scheme. However, under the new rules the Pensions Regulator is now responsible for trustee appointments in insolvency.
In other news, the pensions regulator's code of practice on the new scheme funding requirements for DB schemes has been brought before Parliament.
New scheme funding regulations will replace the Minimum Funding Requirement (MFR) from 30 December 2005.
The new provisions include requirements for trustees to prepare a statement of funding principles reflecting the particular circumstances of their scheme, and to put in place a recovery plan addressing any funding shortfall.
The new regulations will also ensure scheme members are kept updated about their scheme’s financial position
Additional guidance for those schemes moving to the new funding arrangements, including the transitional arrangements, will be issued by the pensions regulator in the next few weeks.
A number of pension schemes have been prompted to lock in gains with a move into bonds after the estimated deficit across FTSE 100 DB pension schemes improved by £36bn, over the 12 months ending 30 June last year, JLT Employment Benefits found.
HM Treasury has agreed in principle to give NEST a £329m contingent liability guarantee in the event of the master trust's wind up or closure.
AMP Capital has set up a dedicated team to help institutional investors, including pension funds, invest in infrastructure through direct equity allocations.