PensionsApr 12 2017

Treasury eyes forcing providers into pension dashboard

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Treasury eyes forcing providers into pension dashboard
ByJames Fernyhough

HM Treasury is in discussions with the Department for Work and Pensions to make participation in the pensions dashboard compulsory for all schemes and providers.

The plan behind the pension dashboard is to create the technology to enable savers to see all of their retirement pots in one place at the same time, giving them a greater awareness of their assets and how to plan for their retirement.

Speaking at the first public demonstration of the pensions dashboard prototype in London today (12 April), economic secretary to the Treasury Simon Kirby said it was vital that a "critical mass" of providers participate in the dashboard.

This, he said, would require the thousands of pension schemes in the UK to "step up" if a comprehensive dashboard is to become a reality by 2019.

"I am discussing with the minister for pensions [Richard Harrington] to see how this might be made compulsory if schemes do not do so by choice."

Addressing providers, Mr Kirby said: "You will reap the rewards of early innovation, while those who are slow off the mark will fall behind."

While he stressed a final decision on compulsion had not yet been made, he promised the government would do whatever it took to reach the critical mass.

Mr Kirby also unequivocally committed to a multiple rather than a single dashboard model, adding that fintech firms would compete with each other to build these dashboards.

"We're all different, we all require different things. Fintech is about competition and consumer choice."

He said the government had considered a single "public good dashboard", but rejected the idea.

"I am convinced multiple dashboards for multiple purposes for multiple consumers is the right way to go," he said.

Throughout his speech, Mr Kirby put the fintech industry at the centre of the government's approach to the pensions dashboard.

He said a "revolution" was under way in the way people used financial services, adding there was "no reason for pensions not to be a part of that revolution".