The Brexit circus is coming to town

January 07, 2016 Tom Murray

forecast Investment markets UK Bank of England EU

This article was originally commissioned and published in December 2015 for Investment Life & Pensions Moneyfacts. Tom Murray considers the troublesome wait for Brexit and how this uncertainty could cause major volatility in the investment markets.
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Long-term care: Care-less attitude doesn’t bode well…

July 23, 2015 Tom Murray

Pensions UK Pensions freedom Life and Pensions Government

Care-less attitude doesn’t bode well… Hot on the heels of the Chancellors pension freedoms comes the news that the changes to the long-term care system that were designed to make long term care more affordable are being delayed until the next government. 2020 is now the stated date for the introduction of the reforms based on the Dilnot report, although they were due to go live in April 2016.
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The FCA should apologise to Pension Providers and IFAs

October 17, 2014 Tom Murray

Pensions UK pension provider trade magazines pension freedom

For the last decade, the FSA, and latterly its reincarnation as the FCA, have lambasted pension providers and the financial advisers that recommend their products. The FCA have criticised their work and insinuated that the IFAs and providers are ripping consumers off and need huge amounts of regulation to prevent them from essentially robbing the consumers.
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Government is ignoring longevity risk with pension reform

July 08, 2014 Tom Murray

annuitisation Pensions UK policy Life and Pensions

The OECD has made a diplomatic intervention to critique mildly the UK government’s abolition of the annuitisation rules for pensions. One does not have to be Sherlock Holmes to spot the clues that reveal that the OECD is actually aghast at the extent of the change. This policy runs against the policy they have been steering their members towards by allowing the population to avoid the longevity insurance provided by annuities and choose instead to take cash lump sums.
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Actuarial Post: New savers need simple products

April 30, 2013 Tom Murray

Pensions simple advice UK margaret thatcher financial sector

By Tom Murray, Head of Product Strategy, Exaxe.
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Investment Life & Pensions Moneyfacts: Pension Reform Part 1

March 28, 2013 Tom Murray

lloyd george longevity Pensions UK old-age pension act

This article was originally commissioned and published in February 2013 for Investment Life & Pensions Moneyfacts publication. Tom Murray, Head of Product Strategy at Exaxe, explores the need to re-create pensions for the 21st century and argues that the Government's latest White Paper is a great start in simplifying pensions
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Government takes the first step with pension reform

January 22, 2013 Tom Murray

poverty line tax payers Pensions UK Life and Pensions

[dropcap letter="T"]he government’s white paper on pension reform is a big step on the road to a simpler, fairer and more comprehensible system. The ending of contracting out and the amalgamation of the second state pension into a basic state pension, which eliminates most of the need for pension credits, will give people a simpler and fairer basis on which to plan their pension. In particular, credits given to those who drop out of the work force, to raise children or to be carers for the elderly, is a great step and will allow many, mostly women, accumulate the 35 years contributions needed to give them a full state pension.
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Income Drawdown rule changes must be reversed

October 09, 2012 Tom Murray

actuarial departments UK Admin Plus Life and Pensions Government

The changes wrought by the current Government to the Income Drawdown regulations, i.e. the restriction of the level of drawdown to 100% of the Government Actuarial Department annuity rates rather than the 120% that it was previously, has seriously affected the at-retirement market. The effect of this change has been to sharply reduce the amount of drawdown products currently being sold; Income Drawdown products have slumped in 2011 to 60% of the level they were in 2010.
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Canada refuses to play games with DB pensions

September 06, 2012 Tom Murray

Minister Flaherty recession defined benefits G20 Pensions

Stephen Harper’s government has done Canada proud by resisting the temptation to follow the US down the path of relaxing financing rules for defined benefit (DB) pensions.
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Employers can’t cope with pension burden

July 13, 2012 Tom Murray

FTSE 100 Barclays Pensions UK EU

It has been reported that the total pension deficit at the UK’s largest companies has more than doubled over the last year, caused primarily by volatile markets and falling bond yields. The analysis carried out by actuarial consultants Lane, Clark & Peacock (LCP) reveals that the combined deficit of 83 FTSE 100 companies rose from £19 billion to £41 billion in the last twelve months. This comes after the same companies had put an excess of £20 billion into their pension funds to try to get the deficit under control.
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