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FCA Publishes Retirement Transfer Data

Back in 2018 the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) reported that advice was suitable in fewer than 50% of pension transfer cases – a figure that fell significantly short of the 90% mark recorded in other areas of the consumer financial advice sector.*

Pension Transfer Advice Still Lacking

As a result of the 2018 findings the FCA carried out analysis of a significant amount of data to help it comprehend the defined benefit pension transfer advice market more clearly.

The FCA has now published details of pensions advice carried out by 3,015 advisory firms between April 2015 and September 2018 on pensions worth a total of £82.8 billion, with an average of individual pension value of £352,303. Interestingly, the watchdog found that 162,047 individuals – accounting for nearly 70% of clients – were advised to transfer out.*

Curiously this figure includes not only UK expat retirement transfers, but also those that relate to UK residents, a demographic that may be less likely to benefit from a transfer into a QROPS or a SIPP.

“We have said repeatedly that, when advising on DB transfers, advisers should start from the position that a transfer is not suitable,” commented Megan Butler, the executive director of supervision, wholesale and specialists at the FCA.*

Butler added that it is deeply concerning and disappointing to see that transfers are still being recommended at similar levels.

Reliable advice for one of life’s most important financial decisions

Choosing whether to undertake an expat retirement transfer is one of the most important, yet complex, financial decisions you will ever have to make. As such, it is essential that you receive reliable, regulated and impartial advice which takes full account of your cashflow needs, retirement goals, time horizon and cross-border situation.

Blacktower Financial Management provides clients with world class and independent financial advice, to help them determine whether an expat retirement transfer really is in their best interests.

We always work with our clients’ best interests in mind and are committed to providing a transparent, professional and attentive service, whatever your financial advice requirements.

For more information about how we may be able to help you achieve your retirement goals, contact your local Blacktower Financial Management office today.

* https://www.fca.org.uk/publications/multi-firm-reviews/defined-benefit-pension-transfers

Other News

British expats in the Netherlands could do with more financial help

French FlagWe all need a little bit of extra help from time to time.

For instance, in one popular expat destination, the Netherlands, research was recently published to suggest that many expats could do with more financial help.

The survey, carried out by the International Community Advisory Panel (ICAP), an independent foundation hoping to strengthen the connection between the Netherlands’ international community and the Dutch government, has shown that the majority of expats living in the Netherlands do not receive enough help from the Dutch government when it comes to several key matters, including finding affordable housing and integrating their children into the school system.

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Income tax rise for British expats

moneyUnder new plans proposed by the Government, and included in Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond’s first Autumn Statement, British expatriates with offshore pensions will face a higher income tax rate.

The plans say that those with QROPS (qualifying registered overseas pension schemes) will be subject to the same tax treatment as those with UK pensions, meaning that they will pay 100 per cent instead of their current 90 per cent. There will also be further measures taken to make setting up a QROPS more complex in the future.

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