Monday, October 3, 2011

New pension crisis ?

As a pension fund trustee, the regulator says I should continue to educate myself in the subject and I take this quite seriously. So last week I went to 2 events, the 1st on risk by AllanbridgeEpic advisors at the Stock Exchange (one seminar room is like the next, could have been anywhere) and the 2nd from Fund Manager Natixis at a hotel next Embankment. I have respect for both outfits in their different areas, they are run by humans (not true of all such events) and they will deal with you on a long term relationship development basis, rather than what can they sell to you today.

At both events I was the only male who was not warning a dark suit and was one of the very few who was under 50. I raise this issue with Karen, the C.E. of AllenbridgeEpic who for different reasons was not warning a dark suit and we agreed that moving forward 15 years there is a risk that the pensions industry will be very short of experienced trustee's. There will be no shortage of people to sell their services as professional trustees, but that is not the point. Trustees from the membership and the company are highly valuable, something missing from the trend of D.C. schemes moving to Group Pension Plans with insurance companies which are great for the company, but much worse for the member.

Can't predict the future, but I can see a serious lack of knowledge trustees and scheme managers in 15 years time to deal with what will be very taxing issues.

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