Thematic review of retirement income advice

We are undertaking a thematic review assessing the advice consumers are receiving on meeting their income needs in retirement.

This review is a piece of discovery work to explore how financial adviser firms are delivering retirement income advice and assess the quality of outcomes consumers are getting.

What has prompted this work

The introduction of the Government’s pension freedom reforms has changed the way consumers access their retirement savings. Given the wider range of retirement options available, it is vital that consumers get good advice at the point they first access their pension savings and, where relevant, on an ongoing basis.

Since 2015, there has been a significant shift to consumers drawing an income from pension funds which remain invested. Advice in this area can be complex, so it is important firms understand the needs of their consumers and ensure their advisory solutions deliver consistently suitable advice.

Previously planned work on this topic (known as ‘Assessing Suitability Review 2’) was paused to allow resource to be concentrated on our response to Covid. This new thematic review will examine how the retirement income advice market is functioning. We will also focus on how firms are responding to changing consumer needs as a result of the rising cost of living.

We will link to the lifetime mortgages work we committed to in our 2022/23 Business Plan, to get a clearer understanding of outcomes for consumers in later life. 

We will use the findings to help inform our future strategy for the sector. The results will also be an important indicator of how firms are implementing the Consumer Duty.

Next steps

We will begin the review in Q1 2023 and aim to publish a report setting out our findings in Q4 2023.

Firms selected for the review can expect to be contacted early in 2023, when we will also engage with trade bodies.

Update: 4 December 2023

We have now completed the review and are analysing the findings. Once we have completed this, we expect to publish our report in Q1 2024.

Page updates

: Information added 4 December 2023 update