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Employee Benefits News

News in 2013
16 Dec 2013 FSCP Report Highlights Bad Practices In UK Annuity Market

The Financial Services Consumer Panel (FSCP) has released a new report in which it criticises some British pension providers and insurance companies for the service they provide to customers. When employees retire, they can use the money accumulated in their pension pot to buy an annuit...

09 Dec 2013 State Retirement Age To Reach 69 In 2040s

Planned changes to the UK´s state retirement system may mean that millions of workers will have to retire later than they had planned. In the long anticipated Autumn Statement, chancellor George Osborne announced the reforms, stating that the move will result in a total of £400 billion b...

02 Dec 2013 Pension Provider Calls For 0.5% Management Fees Cap

The British government´s plan to impose a cap on management fees for pension schemes has stirred the pot in the industry lately. While the government is expecting input from the industry on the proposed changes, pension provider Legal and General claims that the proposed 0.75% cap on fees...

25 Nov 2013 One In Three SMBs Plan To Ignore Auto Enrolment

In 2014, approximately 38,000 UK companies will have to enrol their staff into workplace pension schemes under the next phase of the large-scale government initiative to boost pension savings in the country. Since the start of auto-enrolment last year, the largest British employers have...

18 Nov 2013 Britons Urged To Shop Around For Annuities To Maximise Retirement Income

Britons may be missing out on thousands of pounds in retirement income because they do not make the right choices when buying an annuity. Instead of shopping around and looking into as many options as possible, savers frequently turn to high-street providers that they are familiar with, even th...

11 Nov 2013 UK Government Opens Public Consultation On Defined Benefit Pension Schemes

The UK government is opening a public consultation about possibly removing protections for people who are saving for retirement in a salary-linked pension, known as defined benefit pension schemes. Since this type of scheme is more expensive for employers to run, over the past months ma...

04 Nov 2013 Government Reveals Plans For Pension Fees Cap

The UK government is planning to place a cap on management fees that pension providers charge scheme members, with the limit expected to be set between 0.75% and 1%. The exact cap will be announced when the Treasury has completed its consultation on imposing the limit, BBC News reported.

28 Oct 2013 Just 40% Of Women Take Adequate Steps To Prepare For Retirement

New data released by Scottish Widows revealed that just two in five women in the UK are taking adequate measures to secure a comfortable retirement. This compares to 49% of men who are preparing for later life in a sufficient way, a report by the pension provider said. This means that f...

21 Oct 2013 Auto-Enrolment Rules Undergo Revision After Consultation

The UK government has recently announced that the window for employers to automatically enrol employees into a pension scheme has been extended to six weeks, from one month previously. There will also be a number of technical changes intended to make it easier for smaller companies to add staff...

14 Oct 2013 NEST: UK Workers More Willing To Save For Retirement

Britons have dramatically changed their attitudes towards financial planning and saving for retirement, with workers now much more receptive to pension reforms, according to a new poll by the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST) and research firm Futures Company. For the survey, NES...

07 Oct 2013 DWP Considers Ways To Help Over-Charged Pension Savers

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will be looking at possible ways to assist people whose retirement savings have been hit by excessive charges and fees. According to pension minister Steve Webb, many UK workers that started saving years ago into a number of old pension schemes...

30 Sep 2013 Number Of Workplace Pension Scheme Members Falls In 2012

New data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that the number of people making contributions into a workplace pension scheme fell by 400,000 last year to 7.8 million, compared to 8.2 million in 2011. Meanwhile, total membership of occupational pension scheme...

23 Sep 2013 CEBR: Auto Enrolment To Cost Businesses Between £8,900 And £28,300

Small and medium-sized businesses in the UK will have to put aside up to £28,300 for covering costs related to automatic enrolment, according to a new analysis by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR). For the smallest firms, average costs stand at £8,900, while busine...

16 Sep 2013 Pensions Schemes Likely To See Charges Capped

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is expected to publish its report on its probe into workplace pension schemes any moment now, but many industry representatives think they know what the report will reveal. Many experts believe that the government will take a firmer stance on charges tha...

11 Sep 2013 Bath Rugby link up with Fidelius

Bath Rugby are very pleased to announce a new partnership with wealth management and employee benefits firm Fidelius. Jim Grant, Fidelius Chief Executive, said: "Bath Rugby is one of the most famous brands in rugby with a rich heritage and it is a privilege and pleasure to be the Club's Official Financial Advisers. We very much look forward to working more closely with everyone there; the Foundation, Academy, the team at Farleigh and all the loyal supporters. The next few years are going to be very exciting for everyone involved with the Club and we are looking forward to seeing Bath Rugby progress on and off the pitch."

09 Sep 2013 One In Four UK Micro Businesses Ready For Auto-Enrolment In Advance

Around one in four of Britain´s smallest companies (employing fewer than ten workers) are already ahead of the deadline that requires them to provide a pension scheme for their employees under the automatic enrolment scheme. UK micro companies are required to provide a pension sch...

03 Sep 2013 Events: Future-proof your business: planning for pensions and dealing with retirement

As an HR professional, the chances are that you are already working on an auto-enrolment (AE) action plan for your organisation. Now is the perfect time to make sure your planning pays off. The AE scheme has been underway for some time, and there are lessons to be learnt from other organisations’ experience. This free seminar hosted by Withy King and Fidelius will provide an opportunity to receive practical information and tips on issues surrounding pensions, retirement, age discrimination and age-related performance problems.

02 Sep 2013 Report Claims Raising State Pension Age Creates Inequalities

According to new research by the Trades Union Congress, raising the state pension age to 67 by 2020 contributes to a growing inequality in retirement benefits across different demographic groups. The raise in age was to reflect the increased life expectancy of British employees. For exa...

27 Aug 2013 New State Pension To Have Mixed Effect On Income, TUC Claims

According to the Trade Union Congress (TUC), changes to the British state pension system will have a mixed effect, boosting pension income for some people, but leaving others worse off. A report issued by the TUC stated that most people with a long working life are likely to see their r...

21 Aug 2013 14% of Britons Have No Retirement Plans

Some 5.1 million Britons have said they have no retirement plans, according to a study by Baring Asset Management. This number translates into 14% of the workforce in the country, a rise from 12% last year and 11% in 2011. It is also a record-high for the period since 2008, when the res...

12 Aug 2013 IPS To Benefit From Insolvency Scheme

A proposal has been made by the Treasury to make formal insolvency procedures available for co-operatives, or industrial and provident societies (IPS). This could be beneficial for them as it would facilitate their access to the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), according to legal professionals.

05 Aug 2013 Auto-Enrolment Brings 1m New Savers To Workplace Pension Schemes

New data from The Pensions Regulator has revealed that more than one million employees are now saving for retirement for the first time, as a result of the automatic enrolment scheme. Just nine months after the start of the programme, the number of new workplace pension members has grow...

29 Jul 2013 Young Britons Have Unrealistic Expectations About Retirement Age

New research from insurer Aegon UK suggests that most Britons aged 25 or under believe they are going to retire at the age of 65, without realising that they may not be eligible for a state pension until much later. According to the Daily Telegraph, almost one in three young UK citizens...

22 Jul 2013 UK Small Businesses Unprepared For Auto-Enrolment

A large proportion of small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in the UK are not ready for automatic enrolment 12 months ahead of the deadline. This may result in significant fines for non-compliance, recent survey of 275 SMEs by law firm Irwin Mitchell has suggested. During this summer...

15 Jul 2013 IFS Reports Single-Tier Pension System´s Impact On Various Age Groups

British workers in their 20s are not likely to see any real benefits from the new state pension that the government is trying to introduce, according to findings from the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS). The report looks into the effect of the proposed changes to the UK pension system...

08 Jul 2013 Government Looks To Establish DC Schemes Standards

The government has called for evidence into the quality of working standards in defined contribution pension schemes, in an attempt to ensure automatic enrolment offers protection to those saving for retirement, Money Marketing reported. UK pension minister Steve Webb announced that the...

01 Jul 2013 Large Pension Schemes To Become More Prominent As Auto-Enrolment Progresses

The formation of huge pension schemes that consist of a large number of smaller pension schemes under one common management (also known as ‘master trusts´) will have a dramatic effect on the fragmented British pensions industry, according to Darran Burton, head of defined-contribution p...

24 Jun 2013 Auto-Enrolment Could Cause Problems For Small Firms, Pension Industry Says

Despite the positive feedback from the initial stage of the automatic enrolment scheme and the low opt-out rates, there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure that similar smooth adoption would be achieved by small firms, according to several pension industry groups. The National E...

18 Jun 2013 FIDELIUS GETS IN THE SADDLE FOR CHARITY

John Calvert-Jones from Bath based financial services company Fidelius is gearing up to tackle a 60-mile bike ride in aid of charity. John is to head for the hills as part of the city’s annual Bike Bath event taking place this weekend (22nd and 23rd June) to fundraise for the firm’s charity of the year, Hope for Tomorrow.

17 Jun 2013 UK Workers´ Belief In Pension Savings Is Shaken, Survey Finds

Despite the government´s attempts to boost savings for retirement and to reform the UK pension system, the feeling of disillusionment amongst pension savers is growing. Results from a new survey by insurer MetLife reveal that as many as 12% of British workers over the age of 45 ac...

10 Jun 2013 UK Workers Should Expect 39% Lower Retirement Income

British workers should expect a dramatic fall in their income when they retire, with the average income falling by more than one-third, according to government figures, the Guardian reported. UK workers will see their income drop by an average of 39% when they retire, according to resea...

03 Jun 2013 Survey Shows Some Small Businesses Plan To Avoid Auto Enrolment

Some small firms in Britain may try to avoid implementing automatic enrolment into workplace pension schemes, the Institute of Directors has alerted. Recent research it conducted into small businesses preparedness for the process showed that some companies have planned not to comply with regula...

28 May 2013 Pension Regulator To Invest £30m On Auto-Enrolment

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) will be allocating nearly £30 million to regulate automatic enrolment in 2013/2014, as it tries to improve its enforcement capabilities before small businesses start joining the scheme. The entire budget for TPR next year will be £66.6 million, of which £...

20 May 2013 Pension Minister Warns Of Final Salary Schemes Demise

There are only 12 months left to save final salary schemes, but it may already be too late, according to pension minister Steve Webb, who addressed the UK pension industry in a speech last week. However, he also noted that at least some of the defined benefit schemes could be rescued but it has...

13 May 2013 Queen´s Speech Reveals Planned Pension Reforms

New government plans, outlined in the Queen´s speech, revealed that the retirement age is going to rise further as life expectancy increases. Another major change to British pension plans will see the introduction of a flat-rate state pension of about £155 per week as of April 2016, the ...

07 May 2013 Auto-Enrolment Sees Over 300,000 More Workers Saving For Retirement

More than 300,000 British workers have joined workplace pension schemes since July as part of the government´s auto-enrolment scheme, which aims to encourage workers to save for retirement. New figures from The Pension Regulator (TPR) have revealed that 308,000 people have been au...

29 Apr 2013 Small Pension Pots May Automatically Follow Workers To New Jobs

Employees who change jobs may see their pension pots automatically transferred to their new workplace if there is less than £10,000 worth of savings there, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has proposed in a new plan. According to government figures, British workers change job...

22 Apr 2013 Solvency II To Cost UK Businesses £450bn, EU Commissioned Report Finds

The European Commission should drop its plans to implement the proposed Solvency II regime for defined benefit pension schemes, as it would put additional financial burden on UK businesses, the British government has claimed. UK businesses and pensions funds have also opposed the reform...

15 Apr 2013 UK Pension Deficit Rises In March

According to the latest figures released by the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), the deficit of final-salary pension schemes in the private sector increased in March and reached £237 billion, compared to £201 billion in the previous month. The new data suggests that British businesses t...

10 Apr 2013 48% of Younger Workers Now Saving Into Workplace Pensions

The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has found that the awareness among younger people about developments in pensions has surprisingly increased, most probably as a result of ardent debates prompted by the undergoing overhaul of the system. The changes are set to result in the intro...

08 Apr 2013 NAPF Calls For Slimmer, Clearer Approach To DC Pension Schemes

The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) backs the Pensions Regulator´s proposed improvements to defined contribution (DC) pensions, but fears that the changes cover just half of the market and that the code of practice could prove eventually “counterproductive.” The r...

04 Apr 2013 DWP Consults On Plans To Simplify Auto-Enrolment Rules

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has come up with proposals that are intended to streamline automatic-enrolment rules and has launched a consultation on the matter that will run until next month. DWP is asking employers and pension and payroll providers to send responses about...

25 Mar 2013 Higher Personal Allowance May Take 200,000 People Out Of Auto-Enrolment

The planned increase in the personal income tax allowance in 2014, announced during George Osborne´s budget speech last week, could result in the exclusion of around 200,000 individuals from auto-enrolment schemes, the Citywire reported. The personal allowance, which is the level ...

20 Mar 2013 DWP To Bring TUPE Regulations In Line With Auto-Enrolment Rules

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) announced earlier in March its intention to introduce some changes to TUPE rules to make sure that they comply with automatic enrolment legislation. The most substantial amendment concerns cases involving a TUPE transfer from an employer running a define contribution (DC) scheme, where the new firm will no longer be obliged to pay matching contributions of up to 6% and will be allowed instead to match the contributions paid by the transferor.

15 Mar 2013 FROM MINORITY SPORT TO LEGAL OBLIGATION

Half a year ago, the introduction of new legislation brought about the biggest change to the pensions system in a generation. Iain Fox, employee benefits director of growing Bath financial services firm Fidelius, looks at what small and medium-sized businesses can learn from larger companies’ experiences of auto-enrolment.

12 Mar 2013 Number Of Part-Time Working Women Surges Threefold Since 1987

The latest General Lifestyle Survey of the Office of National Statistics (ONS) showed that about one in four women in Britain occupying a part-time job are currently saving into a workplace pension scheme. This is 11% more than the level recorded 25 years ago, figures showed. Women work...

11 Mar 2013 Failure To Start Saving Earlier Is Baby Boomers´ Biggest Money Regret

Failure to start saving for retirement earlier is the thing that British baby boomers regret most when it comes to finances, a survey from Standard Life revealed. As much as 15% of Britons regret not starting a pension when they were younger, with the proportion going up to 20% among th...

11 Mar 2013 Pensions auto enrolment – this much we know

Six months on from the launch of pensions auto-enrolment, Iain Fox, employee benefits director of growing Bath financial services firm Fidelius, looks at the lessons businesses can learn from those on the scheme’s frontline.

25 Feb 2013 Number of Occupational Pension Savers Hits Lowest Level On ONS Records

About 46% of British workers were saving in a workplace pension in 2012, the lowest proportion since the Office for National Statistics (ONS) started its records in 1997, when 55% of staff were in occupational schemes. However, with the recent pension reforms designed to boost private-s...

18 Feb 2013 Final Salary Pensions Deficit Shrinks To £211.2 Billion In January

Private sector final salary pension schemes saw their aggregate deficit narrow to £211.2 billion at the end of last month from £244.7 billion at the end of December, the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) said last week. According to the latest data, the deficit of the 6,316 schemes in the...

15 Feb 2013 Fidelius Match Ball Sponsorship

Fidelius were delighted to be the match ball sponsors for the game against Worcester Warriors. Jim Grant, CEO of Fidelius, was presented a signed rugby ball by Bath Rugby players Sam Vesty (left) and Simon Taylor right. Bath Rugby stormed to a bonus point win, final score 32-9.

11 Feb 2013 Two-Fifths Of Smaller Firms Without Pension Schemes Support Larger Schemes

Some 42% of smaller employers, that do not currently have a pension scheme, believe in the value of fewer, bigger schemes, where members and employers might share investment, inflation or longevity risks, research by the Association of Consulting Actuaries showed earlier this month. In ...

08 Feb 2013 Tim Lambert to run 150 miles for charity in ultramarathon challenges

Tim Lambert of Bath based property investment firm Parallel Capital is preparing to run two gruelling ultramarathons in a bid to raise £2,000 for Hope for Tomorrow, a charity that reduces hospital visits for cancer patients by providing mobile treatment units.

08 Feb 2013 Clear Communication Can Yield Benefits To Both Your Firm And Your Staff

Iain Fox, employee benefits director of growing Bath financial services firm Fidelius, explains how the art of clear communication can yield benefits to both your firm and your staff

05 Feb 2013 Less Than 50% Of Employers Have Confirmed Pension Provider Said NEST

Less than 50% of employers with a headcount of below 5,000 have confirmed who their pension scheme provider is ahead of the automatic enrolment staging date, the latest research by the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST) showed last week. In 2013, when workplace pensions become mai...

28 Jan 2013 Only 13% Of Final Salary Schemes Open To New Members

Only 13% of final salary pension schemes at UK companies remained open to new members in 2012, which is down nearly a third from the percentage a year earlier, according to new data from the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF). In 2011, 19% of final salary schemes were open to ...

24 Jan 2013 FIDELIUS EXPANDS WITH ROUND OF SENIOR APPOINTMENTS

Fidelius, one of Bath’s leading financial services companies, has appointed two directors to its board and three senior staff to its wealth management and employee benefits divisions as the firm continues its strategy of rapid growth and expansion.

22 Jan 2013 For the Benefit Of All

Offering the right blend of employee benefits to your staff can ensure that those 2013 resolutions don’t fall by the wayside, explains Iain Fox, director at Bath-based employee benefits specialist Fidelius.

22 Jan 2013 It Is Not Just About The Salary

An attractive job offer is about more than the size of the basic salary. At a time of upheaval to the UK’s pensions regime, the accompanying benefits package is also crucial. Iain Fox, director of Bath employee benefits firm Fidelius, explains why offering the right benefits to staff can boost a company’s bottom line as well as staff well-being.

22 Jan 2013 Don't Be on Auto-Pilot For Auto-Anrolment

Iain Fox, director of Bath employee benefits specialist Fidelius, explains why it pays for small and medium-sized enterprises to be ahead of the curve when it comes to pensions auto-enrolment

21 Jan 2013 OFT To Investigate DC Schemes

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) last Thursday initiated a probe into the quality of defined contribution (DC) workplace pension schemes amid reforms in the market resulting from the introduction of automatic enrolment. As a result of auto-enrollment, the value of annual contribution i...

09 Jan 2013 Defined Benefit Schemes Record Smaller Deficit In December

Defined benefit (DB) schemes in the UK saw their collective deficit reduce to £245 billion at the end of December 2012, when compared to £252.2 billion a month earlier, the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) said. PPF also recorded an improvement in the position of the schemes in the PPF 7...

07 Jan 2013 Bigger DC Schemes Offer Higher Quality For Savers

Bigger defined contribution (DC) schemes are more likely to provide savers with good outcomes by displaying the necessary quality features, according to a study by The Pensions Regulator released last week. Over 300 trust-based workplace DC schemes were tested for quality features in ar...

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