Inside FCA Podcast examines how we're regulating a changing pensions sector

The latest Inside FCA Podcast examines key issues in the pensions market from regulatory and trade perspectives. 

The pensions sector has changed rapidly since the pension freedoms were introduced in 2015, bringing both challenges and opportunities. The Inside FCA podcast looks at how we’ve responded to some of these challenges, featuring FCA experts Emma Stranack and Chris McGrath, and Chief Executive of the Personal Finance Society, Keith Richards.

In the podcast, Chris McGrath, Head of Investment Intermediaries and Scams, highlights where we’ve focused our work over the last few years and how we’re working to improve the quality of pension transfer advice.

He highlights that ‘we start from a position as a regulator where it’s best not to transfer out of a defined benefit (DB) scheme unless there are specific individual circumstances that make that so, but yet we’re still seeing many firms where the majority, if not all of the people they advise, they advise them to transfer out of these precious DB schemes.’ He also outlines the comprehensive approach we’re taking to tackle this.

Our ScamSmart campaign, run in partnership with The Pensions Regulator, has highlighted that the average amount victims lost to pension scams in 2018 was £82,000 – representing 22 years’ worth of savings. FCA Head of Business and Consumer Communications, Emma Stranack, discusses the campaign as well as our wider work to tackle scams, including the benefits to consumers.

And Keith Richards gives an external view on these topics – including his view on the FCA’s response to pension freedoms, whether we’re focused on the right areas to improve defined benefit transfers, and the role of financial advisers in helping people avoid scams.