GDPR is coming…

August 03, 2017 Tom Murray

data protection GDPR

GDPR is coming… Forget about Brexit; it is GDPR that is likely to cause the biggest issues for UK life and pension firms in the short and medium term.  The General Data Protection Regulation comes into force on 25th May 2018, well before Brexit day, so all firms in the UK that handle any personal data will come under its remit.  And that will hit life and pension firms heavily, as their business is based on holding large amounts of personal data upon which to base their pricing decision when selling and administering policies, and to provide a justification for claims when they finally arrive. 
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Actuarial Post: Stop guiding and give people advice

July 18, 2017 Tom Murray

guidance The future of financial advice Actuarial Post

Stop guiding and give people advice This article was originally commissioned for the July 2017 edition of the Actuarial Post. At first, the prospects for the new pensions minister didn’t look good. A government, without a working majority, and dependent upon a smaller party that was enmeshed in the intricacies of Brexit, didn’t seem to be in a position to sort out the tangled world of long-term savings and provision for the elderly. This was made even more certain by the problems that arose during the election campaign around the whole area of long-term care.
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Short term pensions ministers inhibits long term strategies

June 22, 2017 Tom Murray

politics pension policy Minister for pensions

Short term pension ministers inhibits long term strategies The fourth pensions minister in two years is in the building.  In May 2015, the minister was Steve Webb, the Liberal Democrat incumbent who was replaced after the general election by Baroness Ros Altman. 
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Aviva buying, AIG innovating & Exaxe launching

Life & Pensions life insurance

  Aviva CEO – “We want acquisitions.” Speaking on Wednesday, the company’s CEO Mark Wilson announced at a Press conference that: “We want to turn Aviva into a fintech. We will do acquisitions in this space… I don’t mean billions, there’s nothing imminent.” “We believe what we have is world leading,” he said. “What we’re trying to do is fundamentally change the insurance industry. How long will it take? I don't know.” The company is said to be spending a minimum of £100 million a year on digital transformation and has established a venture capital fund that has £200 million to invest by 2020. It has already made six investments, with another imminent. Read More: Aviva CEO – “We want acquisitions.”
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Equity release, is it the new black?

equity release

According to the FT Adviser Tory plans for the social care sector could drive more people towards equity release... The article goes on to say ....Under the proposal, published in the Conservative manifesto last week, the threshold for free social care will increase from £23,250 to £100,000 but the value of a property will be included in the calculation for people who need care in their own homes. However, those in care will be able to keep their homes until after they die, when the home will be sold to recover the costs, with £100,000 passed on to loved ones, guaranteed.... read more: Tory social care plans could boost equity release Only last week did Retirement Advantage launch an equity release product that it claims has the lowest interest rate ever they have offered. The Lifestyle Lite product has a monthly interest rate of 3.92 per cent, and comes with an optional cash reserve facility for an extra cost. It is part of the Lifestyle Options range, which also includes Gold and Platinum plans, and is a traditional-style equity release product, where the customer receives a one-off cash lump sum and the interest on it rolls up and is added to a lifetime mortgage secured against the customer’s home. Read more : Equity release plan launches their 'lowest rate ever' So will equity release be the must have item for 2017?
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Investec into life insurance, Pension Board and Robo Future in the UK

Pensions robo-advice life insurance

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Virgin Money Life Insurance, Auto Enrolment & Blockchain

Autoenrolment life insurance blockchain

Virgin Money launch new life insurance product ...Building upon the success of Junction, BGL Group’s personal lines affinity insurance business, which is the largest in the UK, the contract with Virgin Money is the first life insurance affinity partnership for BGL Group....
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Exaxe R&D proving investment & hard work is paying Off

robo-guidance robo-advice

Exaxe are getting ready to officially launch their Robo Advice platform for the European market.  Exaxe has invested heavily in R&D to build a solution that provides a new and innovative approach for advisers and L&P organisations to offer their clients sophisticated options with enhanced rebalancing capabilities. Unlike other advice solutions, which only provide a single product view, Exaxe’s sophisticated algorithms provide a full holistic, multi-product view incorporating a gap analysis. Exaxe’s market research, with some of the leading European L&P organisations, has garnered very positive feedback, along with confirmation that there is not another product like Exaxe’s Robo Advice solution. “We are very excited about initial feedback on our Robo Advice solution.  It only goes to prove that we, with the backing of Enterprise Ireland, were right to invest our time and money in Robo” said Tom Murray, Head of Product Strategy. Only recently did Accenture produce a report stating that "Seven out of 10 Consumers Globally Welcome Robo-Advice for Banking, Insurance and Retirement Services".  Of the 33,000 people surveyed if found that 74% are now open to robo-advice to help determine which insurance coverage to purchase and 68% on how to plan for retirement. We are expecting that the digital revolution that has transformed the way consumers buy online, music, hail taxis and communicate with each other is catching up to the life insurance and pension industry. Exaxe are leaders when it comes to working with companies on digitally enabling their staff, improving the interaction with consumers and intermediaries in real-time omnichannel environments and offering remote and robo advice at any hour on any platform.
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Joined-up Thinking

April 25, 2017 Tom Murray

long term care plans auto enrolment Long Term Care

THIS ARTICLE WAS ORIGINALLY COMMISSIONED AND PUBLISHED IN THE  February 2017 EDITION OF THE INVESTMENT LIFE & PENSIONS MONEYFACTS PUBLICATION.   Joined-up thinking   The recent call from Aon for Long Term Care to be handled by the same government department that manages pensions, in order to ensure joined up thinking across both policy areas, is an excellent idea. Given that long term care is overwhelmingly an issue of old age and that pension savings are to provide for one’s needs post-retirement, the effect of initiatives in one area should always be considered by those who are implementing policy within the other.
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Once In a Lifetime

April 20, 2017 Tom Murray

ISAs Lifetime savings product LISA

  Once in a Lifetime This article was originally commissioned and published in the  April 2017 edition of the Investment Life & Pensions Moneyfacts publication. If one listed them, the majority of people need to cover the same major events during their lifetime: college education, house purchase, children’s education, pensions and long-term care. If the government wanted to, they could have a ready-made approach to encourage people to save for all these events. By linking their government support to these events, it would encourage constant saving as well as helping people to realise the trade-off that was happening each time they dipped into their funds.
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