Responding today (Thursday) to the Government’s Autumn Statement 2013, Helen Forrest, Head of Policy, NAPF, said:
“The NAPF recognises the need to increase State Pension age as people choose to work longer and life expectancy continues to increase (in 2010 it stood at 78.5 years for men and 82.4 years for women).
“The NAPF supports the system proposed in the Pensions Bill 2013, where the Government is legislating for a review of State Pension age every six years or less, which will take account of the latest demographic data available at the time and be informed by an independently led report on wider factors.
“The NAPF believes the Government should define in regulation the terms, expectations and powers of this review. These regulations should also clearly set out the number of years of advance notice that must be provided to anyone affected by changes in their State Pension age. This will give future pensioners adequate time to prepare and make important decisions regarding their pension investments and retirement income.
“The NAPF will assess any additional burdens these changes may place on schemes, and scheme members, and will call on the Government to take account of these concerns.
“The NAPF welcomes the announcement on National Insurance Contributions. It provides an opportunity for all those people who, for whatever reason, have been unable to build up their qualifying years of National Insurance Contributions to ensure they will be eligible to receive the full single tier State Pension.
“The announcement today that stamp duty on shares purchased in exchange traded funds (ETFs) will be abolished from April 2014 will be welcomed by UK pension schemes, as it increases the investment opportunities for some schemes. ETFs track an index (eg S&P 500), commodity or a basket of assets. Interest in these funds may increase post the abolition of stamp duty, particularly amongst smaller pension schemes looking to diversify portfolio risk.”
Notes to editors:
1. The NAPF is the leading voice of workplace pensions in the UK. We speak for 1,300 pension schemes with some 16 million members and assets of around £900 billion. NAPF members also include over 400 businesses providing essential services to the pensions sector.
Lucy Grubb, Head of Media and PR, 020 7601 1726, 07713 073023, [email protected]
Dee Sullivan, Communications Adviser, 020 7601 1717, [email protected]