UK - Trade union Amicus is pressing employers to open the JIB Pension Scheme to electrical contractors in Scotland - and increase contribution rates.
The engineering and manufacturing union is angry that the £110m industrywide defined contribution scheme is open to contractors in England and Wales while those in Scotland only have access to a non-contributory stakeholder.
Amicus also wants employer contributions to increase from the current rate of 2.5%, which it describes as “amazingly low”.
Amicus scottish regional officer Bobby Buirds said: “We want to introduce a pension scheme with better benefits.”
But he added: “It is a long and drawn out process.”
Meanwhile, Amicus members in the plumbing industry have voted in favour of changes to their industrywide scheme – the £865m Plumbing & Mechanical Services Industry Pension Scheme – which has been hit by falling investment returns over the past three years.
Employee contributions will rise from 3.3% to nearly 3.8%, while employers’ contribution rates will rise one percentage point to 7.5%.Pre-retirement bonuses are to be reduced and instead of being raised in line with prices will, from April 6, be in line with price inflation.
National officer Geoff Whitlow – in a letter to Amicus members – said: “We would remind you that Plumbing Pensions continues to represent excellent value for money and the increases will assist in protecting benefits long into the future.”
The secretary of state for work and pensions has told MPs clawback and avoidance measures could be imposed for the people responsible for driving Carillion over the cliff.
Occupational pension provision has continued to grow in value, but there remains large variance in incomes across the pensioner age group, according to latest government data.
Defined benefit (DB) schemes could have an aggregate surplus by 2021 under Pension Protection Fund (PPF) projections, its strategic plan for 2018 to 2021 reveals.
Investment consultants are failing to recommend products that outperform net of fees, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has said as its investigation into the market continues.