Concerns have been raised about making members more aware of risks to their defined benefit (DB) pensions, for fear of leading to panic and knee-jerk reactions.
It comes as the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association's (PLSA) DB Taskforce plans to look into the communication of risks to members as part of its exploration into the problems faced by schemes.
Speaking at the PLSA's conference on the future of DB pensions on 7 July, Whitbread group pensions director and PLSA chair Lesley Williams, said she believed her members were unaware of the risks.
Some people said annual scheme funding statements should say more about the risks to members.
However, Williams felt uncomfortable explaining the situation to her members, fearing a knee-jerk reaction of members transferring their DB benefits into other investments.
"I understand some people's views that annual funding statements could say more about the risks to DB pension schemes but I wrestle with what will be the outcome for some people who will move their benefits elsewhere," she said.
Carillion Construction's pension trustee Alan Bratt expressed doubt about the impact of funding statements when communicating them to members.
"We send out a glossy 16-page booklet with lots of information to thousands of pensioners and we get very few responses. It could be either the case that people don't read it or don't understand it.
"We've also recently tried to pull our additional voluntary contribution (AVC) providers together and are in the process of communicating that via letters to those paying AVCs. Again, we have lack of responses here."
The DB Taskforce was asked to think beyond the funding statement when exploring communicating risks to members.
Jaguar Land Rover trustee chair Marcus Sinclair-Taylor said given the majority of employees viewed DB as a guarantee they will receive their pensions, this area should be properly explored.
"The Pensions Regulator (TPR) said we have a responsibility [post Brexit] to communicate to our members and not panic [about the risks to pensions]," he Sinclair-Taylor. "My own view is it wouldn't be unhelpful for there to be a little panic to give airtime to the topic and for people to be aware that while the target is for pension guarantees, unfortunately things can happen in the real world."
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