Frank Field accuses the UK pensions regulator of having its priorities the wrong way round

Oliver Gill
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Frank Field (right) has been re-elected as the chair of the work and pensions select committee

The UK's pensions watchdog must put workers’ interests ahead of those of shareholders, the chair of the work and pensions select committee urged today.

Frank Field, who has been re-elected as the chair of the influential work and pensions select committee, hit out of the Pensions Regulator (TPR). He told City A.M. a failure to disclose names of the firms it was monitoring was “a marvellous way of covering inaction”.

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On Thursday the government revealed plans to provide the TPR with greater proactive powers to intervene and avert potentially terminal pension black holes building up. But TPR declined to comment yesterday on whether it was in negotiations over how stricken construction firm Carillion intends to deal with its pensions scheme.

Field said: “This guise that ‘we don’t say anything because of the share price’, Well, bugger the share price, what about this pension liability? They’ve got responsibility to the pensioners first.

Obviously they have a responsibility to the welfare of the company, but that is secondary. And the regulator always seems to put that responsibility first.

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