UK - Workers who opt to plunge shares into their company pension scheme will receive a lucrative tax break under the Finance Bill.
The new rules will allow employee shareholders to claim double tax relief for the value of shares contributed to a registered scheme from April 2006, if acquired through a save as you earn (SAYE) or share incentive plan (SIP).
PricewaterhouseCoopers reward and compensation partner Carol Dempsey said: “The generous reliefs will undoubtedly heighten the appeal of SAYE and SIPs as wealth creation vehicles.”
Employee shareholders must contribute shares into their registered pension scheme within 90 days of the SAYE option exercise or instructing the SIP trustees to transfer the shares to obtain relief.
Despite the welcome news for employees, the Conservatives accused the government of “squeezing the tax system for every last penny of its worth”.
Howard Flight MP – who shadows the chief secretary to the Treasury – said: “The government has said it is committed to ‘creating a modern and fair tax system which encourages work and saving’. This Finance Bill will achieve none of these aims.
“Complexity and double meanings will result in businesses and individuals finding scant reward but many additional burdens.”
Most respondents in this week's Pensions Buzz do not think businesses should be able suspend AE contributions if in financial distress.
Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell has lost the appeal against his section 72 conviction and sentence for failing to hand over information to The Pensions Regulator (TPR).
This week's top stories include Marsh and McLennan Companies agreeing to buy JLT, and the home secretary calling for AE to be scrapped in a no-deal Brexit scenario.
Lesley Titcomb says the watchdog wants closer interactions with pension funds to spot problems sooner and act before having to use its more stringent powers