We’re giving pensions a bad name

News of the World

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This from the News of the World this weekend

Fair? Judge for yourself

You work till you drop,pay a fortune into your pension , then get a pittance until you die. Unless you’re a judge.

Earn up to £206,000 pa. Work for 20 years. Retire on up to £61,800 a year.

How much do they pay towards this? NOTHING, How much do we, the tax payers put in? EVERY LAST PENNY.

Compare that to your deal.

The News of the World have every right to be indignant at the judiciary, but thjey shouldn’t have to be campaigning for fairer pensions. The gross inequalities in pension provision addressed in part by Lord Hutton are only the tip of the iceberg.

If I had a pound for the number of times I have been told “it’s such a small world” I’d have a decent pension. The trouble with the small world of pensions is that is is desperately nepotistic. Nobody is going to blow the whistle on the senior exec awarding himself an obscene pension pay rise in his final year or the judge with a non-contributory max-funded DB promise or the offsets that diddled the poorest DB participants of most of their entitlements because we all know someone who knows someone who might be annoyed, might not award us their next consultancy contract, might block us getting onto NAPF council. And so it goes on.

What gives pensions a bad name is not just the wilful inequalities such as those exposed by the NOTW, but the indifference of so many in the pensions world to their impact. For all our talk of governance , we continue to tolerate unfairness in our pension system and in doing so, leave ourselves exposed to the opprobrium of the public.

We think that we can walk away from this by rechristening “pensions” as “retirement saving” or some other such clap-trap but this is equally offensive to the general public. We can’t spin our way out of our fundamental responsibilities.

There are of course many strong minded people who rise above the mire. My firm is not alone in standing foursquare against the complacency about the malpractice that still exists in our pension system.

I suspect however it will not be from within but without that the impetus for genuine fairness in pensions will be created. Hats off to Guy Basnett and those like him.

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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1 Response to We’re giving pensions a bad name

  1. Pingback: The DB Phoenix « Henrytapper's Blog

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