Simoney Kyriakou  

Why has it taken so long to set up the pensions dashboard?

Simoney Kyriakou

Simoney Kyriakou

Advisers have for many years called on the government and industry giants to make it easier for unadvised people to get information and more understanding about their pension pots.

A pensions dashboard seems like an ideal way to help people get more transparency and visibility over their money. Surely that is a good thing? 

A more informed public is a public less susceptible to pension scammers, so chief executive of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme Caroline Rainbird said in October.

A more informed public is, surely, what the industry needs. 

People who understand how to use services such as Pension Wise and Maps, and are able to make basic decisions for themselves based on the information available to them, are less likely to make daft decisions with their money. Or so we hope; as we know, for every financially savvy consumer, there is a financially vulnerable one and a scammer lurking around the proverbial corner. 

Advisers have been highlighting the problems for years. 

A growing advice gap, together with a lack of visibility over various pots of money, means consumers are left in the dark about how much money they have in various policies, how much they are paying in historic charges, and whether they are losing money in long-forgotten accounts. 

And there is the rub: while advisers and customers are calling for something like this to get them more financially independent, the providers who benefit in the long-run from customer apathy are not pushing the dashboard through with more urgency. 

Call me cynical, but Mr Musk will probably have a populated space station on Mars before the pensions dashboard is launched in the UK.

Simoney Kyriakou is editor of Financial Adviser