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We have responded to the government’s consultation on standards in workplace pensions by calling for a full standardisation of pension charges.
The government opened its consultation, Better Workplace Pensions, last month following years of work into standards in working pensions. With millions of people joining a workplace pension as a result of auto-enrolment, it is essential that standards are high.
The government proposes to cap charges at a 0.75% annual fee or equivalent. Our charges are already well below this level (0.5%), however we still have some concerns about the unintended consequences of the cap. It is still possible to levy several different types of charge on a pension and we believe that this is confusing for consumers and makes it near impossible to compare between products. We would like the government to fully standardise pension charges.
The consultation also covers a number of standards around scheme governance, which we support in principle. Pension schemes will have varying memberships so it is important that providers can put the best governance in place for their members.
Finally, the government is not alone in working on standards in workplace pensions. The Pensions Regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority and the European Commission are all reviewing this issue. It is important that these different strands of work are brought together. There is a risk that providers will have to separately demonstrate compliance with these different sets of standards at substantial cost.
Read our response to the consultation: Better workplace pensions