Hammond’s avoidance of pension tinkering is “extraordinarily positive”

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22 Nov, 2017

Hammond’s avoidance of pension tinkering is “extraordinarily positive”

Philip Hammond has done something extraordinarily positive in this Budget – he’s not tinkered with pensions to raise cash, affirms the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organisations.

The praise from Nigel Green, founder and chief executive of deVere Group, comes after the Chancellor delivered the Autumn Budget 2017 on Wednesday afternoon, in which there was a marked lack of changes to pensions.

Observers noted that the only major change was that the lifetime allowance for pension savings will increase in line with the Consumer Prices Index, rising to £1,030,000 for the tax year 2018 to 2019.

Mr Green comments: “Philip Hammond has done something extraordinarily positive in this Budget – he’s not tinkered with pensions to raise cash.

“This is particularly remarkable because he needs an extra £8bn for the expenditure to which the government has already committed – and he has resisted the temptation to raid pensions”.

He continues: “For far too long successive British governments have deemed people’s hard-earned retirement funds as an easy, ‘go-to’ option when it needs to bolster revenue.

“This has been the approach because the governments can politically get away with it because there is a good deal of money locked within pensions, most of this belongs to the better-off section of society, and they get tax relief”.

He adds: “As such, this is an important step in the right direction. Finally, it would appear that the Treasury is understanding that pensions are typically people’s most important asset and should not be seen as ‘low hanging fruit’ to be plundered by the State”.

Mr Green concludes: “We are delighted that Mr Hammond has left pensions alone in this Budget and we hope that this lack of meddling is the start of a new approach.

“This is positive for both pension savers and the pension industry as pensions are, of course, long-term and continual short-termist tinkering is counterproductive and misguided”.