A good article in the Irish Times written by Tommy Neilsen in relation to proposals for simplification of pensions. It would lead to lower costs and better returns for people saving for pensions.
The Bill was publiashed yesterday and contains nothing that will upset or change the pensions landscape. Some minor technical amendments to note:
We have not covered all the points below but took what we see as important from the budget announcements yesterday. Remember we are paying a lot of taxes and pension contributions are a great way to reduce your tax bills!
This is a good brief article. We think the impact of Brexit on Ireland brings more negatives than positives. Unchartered waters ahead in our view!
The Revenue issued some good news today on Buy Out Bonds. These pensions are now allowed for all people who have left a Defined Benefit or Defined Contribution scheme. Previously the BOB was not always open to people who left a Defined Benefit Scheme. A "BOB" is a pension that you can control and own (in your name) something no longer controlled by the Trustees of your old scheme. Signature Trustees offer Buy Out Bond options to clients. A Personal Retirement Bond is also often known as a Buy Out Bond. They are the same, its jargon that can confuse individuals, even those in the industry!
Pramit Ghose wrote a very interesting article for Merrion Stockbrokers recently around Defined Benefit Schemes. I guess the point is that clients need to be very careful around the solvency of their DB Scheme and should know what position or order of preference they come when it comes to drawing the benefits. Signature come across lots of schemes that need careful consideration by the clients investment manager / advisor.
On Saturday this article was in the Independent. We think this will impact on the performance of pension funds up to and after "Brexit". No doubt Investment managers are already trying to negate the impart of pension fund performance under management depending on what result comes out from Britain in june. Just have to continue to watch the space!
We think this is a really good article by Matheson. This area is only going to grow in our experience. Expecially when you consider that the government has extended the qualification for state benefits in respect of people in retirement. The question that people should consider is what is my company retirement age? Say its 65 for example yet you are not entitled to a state pension until 68! How will you bridge the gap?, what will you live on? All very valid questions for the coming years!!!
This is a good example to Trustees of pensions, especially maybe member Trustees in knowing the priority of members entitlement to pension benefits. The story shows the importance of a Trustee and other parties in a group scheme in notifing the members of how important it is for them to know as much as possible about their benefits in retirement. The story is common across the country but probably made the news due to its association with Anglo which is currently topical as a news story.
I think this is a good article from Mason Hayes & Curran in relation to the future of the pensions industry. It is important for Trustees but for anybody working within the industry.
It appears that given the Brexit discussion currently ongoing that George Osborne has held off on plans to scrap pension tax relief in the UK. We tend to watch closely what the UK are doing on pensions given our close association here in Ireland. In the past, some of the UK pension ideas have come across to Irish legislation. Therefore important to have an eye on the UK.
We thought this article made intersting reading. It gives a very broad opinion of where Britain stand currently based on a small sample from a Bloomberg Economist survey. For Trustees this is something to watch carefully as it will be an issue for the Investment Managers on schemes to be very mindful in 2016.
Is the ‘real’ Standard Fund Threshold greater than €2million?
The following changes take effect from 1 January 2015. They are in addition to the announcements made in the Budget speech recently. Some positive changes for pensions in our view here.
We are delighted to launch our new website today for Signature Trustee Services. Its a very exciting time for the office and hopefully a clearer more transparent web site for our clients to access and indeed a source for prospective clients to seek information.