Few choices , crap decisions

choices peoples

The delights of pension freedom!



The People’s Pension and State Street are running a research project on the decisions people are taking with their “pension” pots. The study can be read by following the link at the bottom. It’s interesting as the 80 people followed over time are what the FCA call “vulnerable” , they aren’t financial experts, don’t have advisers and don’t have a history of independent financial decision making (SIPPs , buy to let etc.  These people are on their own and it shows

The conclusion reached is that

“Engagement remains a key challenge. Given this, it is unlikely that ‘retail’ solutions alone are going to be appropriate. Instead, institutional options, most notably simple and effective default options…”

This is confirmed by this excellent report and it’s vox pops.

People purchase annuities out of fright

cash in their chipschoices 4

Choices 8best lack all convictionchoices 5

choices 6while the worst…

choices 10


Decisions bring surprises- even within the early time scales  of this longitudinal survey.


choices 11

It really doesn’t matter whether people are advised or unadvised, they seem equally hapless!

Though a few are asking questions

choices 12


The report is a gem, we will look back at it- and other in the series – and cherish people’s early optimism and sang-froid.

Whether such optimism will be there in ten let alone thirty years is another matter!




You can read this excellent work in full by following this link – I urge you do!

Click to access 16047_SSGA_TPP-SSGA-Joint-Research_FINAL-COMPLIANCE-APPROVED.pdf

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 Few choices , crap decisions

  1. Phil Castle says:

    That’s pretty much my experience of consuemrs too. We explain everything, provide every bit of paperwork under the sun required and the consumer whilst they might understand it the day after we’ve explained it all with pretty pictures and diagrams (and on the whole they do), very few remember much for mroe than a few days.
    There usual response is “That’s what I have you for Phil”.
    We do the right thing for the client based on our knowledge of the client and their decisions on the chocies we put in front of them. That is why they come to us and what they Trust us to do. What we then have to Trust them to do is NOT to have selective memories as to what was agreed and why. Unfortunately, we can’t Trust all of them, so recording meetings become our solution to selective memory (of both parties) over a decade ago.
    It was how we defended the only complaint we’ve had as the suitability report was proving as much use as a chocolate fireguard, but fortunately, I’d felt uncomfrotable with the criticisism of this new client of other professionals she’d dealt with as she didn’t have a good word to say abotu ANYBODY.

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