Fresh fears over British Steel pensions

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City & Finance Reporter for the Daily Mail

Half the advice given to workers over their pensions is bad, according to the FCA

Half the advice given to workers over their pensions is bad, a top city regulator warned amid fears that sharks are preying on vulnerable former steelworkers.

The Financial Conduct Authority has stepped in, concerned workers will lose huge chunks of their pensions due to rogue advisers pocketing sky-high fees.

Yesterday, Megan Butler, director of supervision at the FCA, told Channel 4: ‘We saw low rates of proven suitable advice quite frankly, less than 50 per cent. It certainly would indicate that the advisory community needs to improve.’

The British Steel Pension Scheme is being closed in favour of a new one being set up by Port Talbot owner Tata Steel, while members can also leave.

But a short deadline for thousands to make a decision has created a feeding frenzy among financial advisers. 

Some are charging steelworkers up to £6,000 for transferring their pensions, a parliamentary committee probing the situation heard yesterday.

As of mid-November, around 1,700 members had transferred benefits, while 11,000 had asked for information about transferring their pot to a new provider.

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