More than one third of pensions professionals think the cost of regulation is too high and expressed concern over the pensions minister’s direct intervention on ESG issues, according to research from the Pensions Management Institute (PMI).
The PMI’s latest Pulse Survey revealed that 34% of industry professionals were worried about the rising cost of regulation, with more than half of respondents dissatisifed with the direction of pensions policy thus far.
37% of respondents also thought that Guy Opperman’s letter to the 50 largest pension schemes requesting ESG-related sections of their statement of investment principles also set a “worrying precedent” for schemes, given they are likely to have incurred additional costs in meeting the request.
President of the PMI, Lesley Carline, said that while the organisation welcomed appropriate regulation and an increased focus on ESG across the pensions industry, policymakers needed to bear in mind the extra costs this might impose on pension schemes.
“The protection of scheme members’ funds should remain the top priority and obstacles to achieving positive member outcomes should be thoroughly examined,” she said. “It is imperative that we see increased transparency around any regulatory costs that may negatively impact the costs of levies for schemes and leave them out of pocket.”