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First pension dashboard set to launch next year

Pension dashboards will be launched next year, but they won't include state pension data straight away.

The free, user-friendly dashboard will bring together the facts and figures of people's various pension schemes in one place online for the first time -- helping savers to make informed choices and better plan for retirement.

Nearly two-thirds of UK savers have more than one pension.

According to the Department for Work and Pensions, the aim is to show people clearly how much they have in their pension pots and what they can expect to have to live on in retirement. It will also help savers to find 'lost' pension savings.

Recent research by the Pensions Policy Institute and the Association of British Insurers found that there could be around 1.6 million lost pension pots worth almost £20bn -- the equivalent of nearly £13,000 per pot.

The UK government is currently seeking views about what the pension dashboards will look like and how they will work. The first dashboard is expected to be made available in 2019, with multiple dashboards introduced in the following years subject to the necessary consumer protection being in place.

And the government said it will work with the pensions industry to include state pension information "at some stage".

Industry commentators welcomed the plans but expressed disappointment over the apparent delay in incorporating state pension data.

Jenni Allen, managing director of Which? Money, said that pension dashboards "could be a game-changing improvement to the way people manage their pensions".

"Every dashboard must display all the important information consumers need in a clear and accessible way, allowing them to easily understand their pension savings and the costs involved," she added. "It's crucial that all schemes are included, alongside the state pension, so that savers are able to make informed decisions about their retirement savings and plan their lives accordingly."

Former pensions minister Steve Webb, now director of policy at Royal London, commented: "Worryingly, state pension data will not be on the dashboard from day one but will simply be included via a link to another website. This will seriously delay the scope for pension planning tools that look at the whole of an individual's pension saving -- which is one of the major potential advantages of having a dashboard."

Posted on December 5th 2018

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