Strawman more urgent than snowman

March 02, 2018 Tom Murray

politics Ageing population Autoenrolment pension reform irish government

Strawman more urgent than snowman   The Irish Government’s latest foray into the world of pension reform has been buried under an avalanche of snow. Given the ageing population in Ireland and the ever-mounting costs of providing for people in their old age, this issue deserves far more front-page space than the ability of people to survive two days without a fresh supply of bread or milk. Such is human nature, however, that we find Storm Emma dominating the front pages whilst the government plans for pensions are firmly buried deep in the business sections.
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The ship has sailed on pension reform

December 10, 2014 Tom Murray

decumulation Pensions UK politicians politics

As we reach the end of 2014, it has become clear that the Pension Reform announced last March by the Chancellor George Osborne is here to stay. It is universally popular with retirees and no potential government can hope to get in without promising to maintain it. Only time will tell if it will lead to problems further down the road. As it stands, the people have welcomed the opportunity to take charge of their own financial affairs in retirement and will dismiss anyone who lectures them on their inability to manage their own money.
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Canada can learn from UK pension reforms

December 04, 2014 Tom Murray

RRIF Pensions UK Canada annuity rate

The UK Government has embarked on a major reform of the pension regulatory environment. Prior to this, the UK‘s policy was to encourage pension saving by giving tax breaks to regulated pension savings schemes, as a quid pro quo, but demand that the retiree use the money saved to support themselves through to death.
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These are testing times for ‘speed to market’ claims

November 25, 2014 Tom Murray

Illustrate Plus Pensions illustration system Platforms rapid product development

The ease with which new products can be launched is one of the most common drivers for the purchase of new IT solutions. The cost and time involved in bringing new products to market has been a bugbear for the life and pensions industry and, ergo, the majority of solution vendors would claim ‘speed to market’ as one of the prime benefits that flows from the purchase of their solution.
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Lovely, Jubbly – pension’s freedoms brings opportunity for the Del Boys

October 24, 2014 Tom Murray

Pensions UK guidance pension freedom del boy

The current spate of pension reform is posited on the idea that pension money is the saver’s own money and that therefore they should be entitled to do what they like with it. However, the ageing population means that supporting people through their old age will become ruinously expensive for the country by the middle of this century. The fact that government is pushing people to save for this very specific reason is being completely ignored in the desire to please the grey vote by giving them full control over their savings.
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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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Should a pension be renamed severance pay?

October 16, 2014 Tom Murray

Pensions UK rip-off Life and Pensions defined benefit scheme

What is a pension? Up to the end of 2013, most of us would have defined it as a regular payment that is made to a retiree for the duration of his or her retirement. It’s worth remembering that because the latest pension reforms, introduced by the Chancellor, and apparently amended on a daily basis, are taking the whole idea of pensions in a completely different direction.
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The Chancellor’s sophistry on pension reform is dangerous

July 22, 2014 Tom Murray

Pensions UK Life and Pensions longevity insurance regulation

Chancellor George Osborne was dismissive of the critics of his Budget 2014 pension reforms in an interview with the BBC this week. “It’s not my money, it’s not your money… We have to get away from the patronising view that the state knows best”.
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Guidance issue is key to pension reform success

July 17, 2014 Tom Murray

lump sum decumulation Pensions UK superannuation

Compared to most other countries, the decumulation sector in the UK is very sophisticated. A wide variety of decumulation options are in place to deal with longevity risk. The danger of outliving your money is the most severe risk faced by the public because when it impacts, the individual is too old to return to income generating activities to compensate. So the availability of conventional annuities, flexible income annuities, deferred annuities and enhanced annuities along with myriad drawdown products optimises the choice for retirees so that they can get suitable financial products for their particular circumstances.
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Back to basics - Lloyd George’s legacy - Life and Pension

November 20, 2013 Tom Murray

Henry Asquith legacy Pensions UK labour party

This article was originally commissioned and published in November 2013 for Investment Life & Pensions Moneyfacts publication.
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