Pensions and Pontius Pilate

Pensions and Pontius Pilate

To mark the launch of the MyFS report on funding retirement, we asked some of our panelists from the debate to give us an update on their thoughts regarding the new pension freedoms that come into effect next week… First up is Neil Lovatt, director at Scottish Friendly.   This is going to be a remarkable year. In April we’re going to see the most radical reform in pensions market in its history. Then I suspect we’re going to see an explosion of activity as people take advantage of the changes. In the space of a few weeks we’ll see the beginnings of changes, the effects of which will take a generation to fully understand and comprehend. Immediately after the April reforms we’ll have a General Election and a new government will have to make an early and important call: do they stick with the reforms or do they button down the edges? As you may have seen at the MyFS roundtable in December, I’ve got form on this topic. I can see great opportunities but immense dangers. For me the biggest concern is that customers’ pension assets will be used and abused outside the confines of the protection afforded by the regulated financial services sector, in particular the buy-to-let sector. I recall only too well in 2004 the then Labour government’s proposal to enable SIPPs to purchase residential property. It caused an unseemly tidal wave of marketing by the buy-to-let sector telling potential clients that they could now get tax relief on their properties. Fortunately just as the great transfer of assets in pensions to property was about...
Panellists announced for ‘Funding Retirement’ debate

Panellists announced for ‘Funding Retirement’ debate

On Wednesday 17 December, 2014, the inaugural My Financial Services (MyFS) event will take place on the subject ‘Funding Retirement’. MyFS are delighted to announce that the following people have confirmed that they will be part of the panel debate:     The Right Honourable Steve Webb, MP Steve Webb is the Liberal Democrat MP for Thornbury and Yate and has been the Minister of State for Pensions since May 2010. Prior to this, Steve was the Member of Parliament for Northavon from 1997 to 2010 and held a number of posts in the Liberal Democrat Shadow Cabinet including Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change and Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. Outside of politics, Steve studied philosophy, politics and economics at Hertford College, Oxford. He then worked as an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies from 1986 to 1995 before being appointed Professor of Social Policy at Bath University.   Stephanie Condra, Pensions Specialist, AXA Investment Managers Stephanie works in the Clients and Markets group at AXA Investment Managers (AXA IM) delivering thought leadership and market insight across regional markets and focusing on the retirement market. Prior to joining AXA IM, Stephanie led the corporate investment consulting business at a pension consultant in Ireland and prior to that structured investment and wealth management solutions for clients of a private bank in Canada. Stephanie has over 15 years’ experience in the investment industry. She completed the specialised Global Asset and Wealth Management MBA programme at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver and also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA)...