The Pension Dashboard?

Oct 10 23:10 2018 Print This Article

Maria Espadinha of the FT Adviser reports, Pension dashboard could be 'foundation' for innovation:The pension dashboard could help drive innovation in the same way open banking has, fintech provider Origo argued.The company, which has been developing and testing a dashboard prototype, published a 13 page paper called Pensions Dashboard to Open Pension which explained how the project can deliver an "open pensions" system.The pension dashboard, which is due to launch in 2019, is a project to allow savers to see all of their retirement pots in one place at the same time, giving them a greater awareness of their assets and how to plan for their retirement.Anthony Rafferty, managing director at Origo, said there had been suggestions the dashboard could leverage the open banking approach, since this would lead to a free market environment where innovation helped improve the customer experience.Open banking is aimed at increasing competition and allows customers to share their current account information securely with other third-party providers, who can then integrate this information into their services.Examples of market entrants making use of open banking are Moneyhub, Yolt, and Squirrel Investing.A fully functioning dashboard will allow for delegated authority to regulated financial advisers and the Single Financial Guidance Body, to inform retirement planning, to obtain pension comparisons, or to populate a budgeting style app, he argued.Mr Rafferty said: "We believe there is a need for a specific approach for the pensions industry."The current proposals for the pensions dashboard should be the catalyst for consumer engagement, building on the success of open banking to deliver an open pensions landscape, incorporating highly sophisticated centralised controls for consumer protection, privacy and consent management."The pensions dashboard lays down the firm foundations the industry needs to enable fintech innovation."But Mr Rafferty said while it was natural to draw parallels between the two initiatives, there were specific requirements in the pensions industry which required different approaches. He said: "Open banking was regulatory driven as a means to increase competition in banking. "The pensions dashboard, on the other hand, is designed to help people find their pension pots wherever they may be, in a secure manner and obtain information about them."Mr Rafferty said another difference was the composition of the markets. There are more than 300 pension providers in the UK of "all shapes and sizes - each with different legacies, online capabilities and supporting architecture," he noted, but with open banking only nine large banks were involved. "Scale in the pensions sector needs to be tackled differently," he said. Another key factor was that people know who they bank with and their online banking credentials, Mr Rafferty said. He said: "Compare this to the pensions world where a consumer may have up to 11 pension pots and may not know of or have lost track of some."Furthermore, not all pension administrators will have issued credentials for online access as some simply do not have the capability to do so."This meant the dashboard required a single identity verification point and a central Pension Finder Service to search the entire market to ascertain where an individual’s pensions may be, and to feed the information back to the individual, through the dashboard screen."This is all quite different to the open banking approach," he stated."Also significant is the complexity of pensions information – the differences between arrangements such as DB and DC arrangements, for example," he added.Last month, the government said it would let the industry take lead on the project and shied back from committing to force providers to submit client data.Paul Gibson, managing director of Granite Financial Planning, said: "The pension dashboard could lead to an open pensions system but may struggle to gain traction particularly with some pension providers who struggle to even provide an online valuation system that works."Newer pensions should not be an issue but legacy products may prove problematic."I don't know, I'm not an expert on the UK pension system but the pension dashboard sounds a lot more complicated than it needs to be. Nevertheless, it is a step in the right direction, if it gains traction.Last week, I spoke with Randy Cass, founder and CEO of Nest Wealth, Canada's first digital wealth manager. Randy is a former fixed income/ quant manager at Ontario Teachers' who left that organization and subsequently founded this company which is a great success story.Anyway, it was a very interesting conversation, we spoke of a recent survey which states, 69% of Canadian Employees Say They Would Leave Their Job Without a Company Savings Plan to Go to a Company With a Group RRSP:

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About Article Author

Pension Pulse

Leo Kolivakis is an independent senior economist and pension and investment analyst with years of experience working on the buy and sell-side. He has researched and invested in traditional and alternative asset classes at two of the largest public pension funds in Canada, the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (Caisse) and the Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments). He's also consulted the Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada on the governance of the Federal Public Service Pension Plan (2007) and been invited to speak at the Standing Committee on Finance (2009) and the Senate Standing Committee on Banking, Commerce and Trade (2010) to discuss Canada's pension system.

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