Pensions trustees set to cut back on equities

Julian Harris
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NEARLY three quarters of occupational pension trustees are looking to cut back their allocation to equities, according to a comprehensive survey released today.

And companies are hoping to reduce deficits in their pension funds, with 22 per cent of trustees expecting to receive company assets in lieu of cash contributions, the study by Pension Corporation reveals.

“Flexibility in how to pay off deficits should be good news for companies as they seek to retain liquid assets in a difficult economic environment,” said David Collinson of Pension Corporation. “Trustees are looking to seriously tackle the deficits in their pension funds and aim to use every tool available to them, including company owned assets.”

Over half (55 per cent) of pension fund trustees may increase sponsor contributions more than 10 per cent after the next valuation. Eleven per cent say they could raise contributions by 20 per cent or more.

Close to half (44 per cent) of those surveyed feel that the government’s move to apply inflation uplifts to the consumer price index (which is usually below the retail price index) is “unfair on pensioners”.