Contributors were pretty relaxed about The Pensions Regulator's reliance on staff seconded from major consultants. Although a third were worried about the conflicts of interest that could arise from these arrangements the majority thought the benefits outweighed the risks.
Several contributors pointed to the difference in circumstance between TPR and HM Revenue and Customs. One respondent said: "The regulator does nothing that pension specialists wish to game on behalf of our clients so there is nothing for us to manipulate so no risk."
Another contributor who saw no risk in the arrangement said: "A secondment would equate to a massive saving for TPR compared to engaging with firm directly, so what would the problem be?"
"An exposure to reality from both perspectives can only improve understanding and communication," said another supporter.
But a more sceptical contributor warned: "Consultants will influence regulations and TPR operations to benefit consultants. Not necessarily schemes. Has anyone thought about seconding actual practitioners?"
Other warned of conflicts and "cronyism", while once contributor said the advent of TPR had been a "bonanza for advisers".
"The covenant reviews which TPR is ordering trustees to commission from accounting firms are a scandal," they said.
This week's edition of Professional Pensions is out now
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