Category Archives: actuaries

“Spanish steps” – ideas on pension funding from Jon Spain.


Jon Spain is an eccentric brilliant actuary who has worked for many years worked at the Government Actuary’s department. I am proud he has asked me to provide a précis of his response to Charles Cowling’s Sessional Paper to the Institute … Continue reading

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“The belly of the beast” – Con Keating and the Investment Association


Con Keating is not everybody’s cup of tea, but he’s mine – especially when he’s after  transparency. This shows him with a timely warning to those who think leaving transparency in the hands of the Investment Association is a good … Continue reading

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Salary Sacrifice – a foot in the door for the poorly pensioned?


Everybody knows that the pension tax-relief system is heavily weighted in favour of the have’s who get big income tax incentives. It is weighted against the low waged who can get excluded from contribution incentives altogether. Steve Webb, who thinks … Continue reading

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First Actuarial warns on knee-jerk reactions to the interest rate rise


With the Bank of England doubling interest rates, First Actuarial predicts a flurry of good and bad pension headlines, but warns of misguided optimism on funding and a rush for the door fuelled by pessimism about transfer values. Good news … Continue reading

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BSPS2 is not a lame duck – people should not feed the pike.


This tweet was put on social media by John Ralfe last night. More people read my blogs than read John’s tweets and there is a good argument for letting this idiocy lie. However, it is important that little rumours are … Continue reading

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We need to learn to love the PPF more


Hilary Salt asks “rather than designing new DB superfunds, wouldn’t it be better to grow to appreciate and improve our existing superfund?” It must be frustrating for the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) when the public perception is that to end … Continue reading

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Why I’m not at the PLSA conference today


  I’m writing at 6am, soon I will be getting on a train to Manchester which will be full of people going to the PLSA Conference. I won’t be going to that Conference, instead I will be visiting Sage’s accountant support office … Continue reading

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Pure DC at your university? Mike Otsuka speaks out


Mike is now a regular writer on this blog; he’s an LSE philosopher, a member of the USS pension scheme and an expert in pensions (not a “pensions expert”).   Southampton has come out in favour of closing USS’s defined benefit … Continue reading

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First Actuarial- proud to work for you!


  I had a nice surprise over breakfast; whizzing through my emails I found that while I’ve gone on holiday, they’ve issued a FAB press release! 50:50 claim by PLSA is “dangerously misleading” says First Actuarial First Actuarial chastises the … Continue reading

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New torment for investment consultants – Mike Foster.


  Mike is a senior consultant at Montfort Communications. Until recently he was assistant editor at Financial News and that journalistic pedigree shines through in this remarkable piece of writing. Though the mills of God grind slowly, yet they grind … Continue reading

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