[long_equity_returns] [consultations]

During the early part of 2013, the UK Government consulted over whether smoothing of assets and liabilities should be disallowed (as has been the case for several years), permitted, or made mandatory. The response was, to my mind, amazingly, adverse and, in some cases, misinformed. Two particular canards were that those promoting smoothing were promising lower costs and evading bad news. In fact, smoothing can increase costs in the short term and the argument was really about what is appropriate for the long-term. In the end, smoothing continues to be banned, which is a real shame.

On 20 February 2017, DWP launched a green paper entitled “Security and Sustainability in Defined Benefit Pension Schemes”, with responses due in by 14 May 2017. Presented entirely personally, I submitted my views on the last day. So far, there has been no official response to any of the submissions.