The Irish Pensions Board must develop a “clear, overarching vision” for the future of defined contribution (DC) regulation, rather than try to address individual concerns on a piecemeal basis, the Society of Actuaries in Ireland has said.The Society said it recommended a “fundamental” overhaul of DC in the country once the regulator had settled its plans, and that the redesign should be based around its proposals for the future of the pension system.In its response to the Pensions Board consultation on the future of DC regulation, the Society also urged the regulator to move away from proposals that would see the new standards only applied to younger funds.“If schemes are required to meet a particular standard to be approved by the Board, we recommend this be signposted in advance, with the new standards applying for all schemes from a date in the future,” it said. “This will give existing schemes time to transition to the new standards, and many new schemes are likely to aim to meet the standards from inception, but it would mean a single set of standards applying in the market place.”It also said the regulator should not seek to apply a blanket understanding of risk across all investment strategies, rather taking the personal circumstances of members into account – “in particular, the time remaining to the DC member’s planned retirement date”.The society further called for a debate around the model of trusteeship in Ireland, and said it would be “beneficial to determine if the benefits of the trustee model could be more effectively delivered in another way”.“We suggest it would be worthwhile to explore possible alternatives to the trustee model in detail, rather than solely focusing on adding further complexity to the role of the trustee,” it said, without elaborating on how a replacement model for trusteeship could look.The society’s views clash with those of Trustee Decisions head James Kavanagh, who, while speaking at a public consultation by the Pensions Board last month, called for his industry to be “more professional in [their] prudential role”.The actuarial group also said that, in attempting to lower the cost of DC provision, the Board should be mindful of the complexity of the current system acting as a “significant” driver of costs and suggested this was a further reason to ensure simplicity.It added: “Given the potential complexity for trustees to make fee/charge comparisons, trustees would benefit from Pensions Board guidelines/training setting out the factors that should be considered when assessing value for money.”It said such guidance should focus not only on fees but quality and service provided, “as well as the ultimate goal of promoting good outcomes for members”.,WebsitesWe are not responsible for the content of external sitesLink to Society of Actuaries In Ireland’s consultation response
By Martyn HermanLONDON, England (Reuters) – Skipper Joe Root looks certain to bat at number three in the first Ashes Test starting at Edgbaston tomorrow in the latest attempt to beef up England’s flimsy top order.Root, widely-regarded as England’s best batsman, has been reluctant to bat at three, probably as a result of the unreliability of a succession of opening combinations.Talking ahead of the opener yesterday, Ashes debutant Joe Denly confirmed that Root had phoned him this week and said he wanted to bat at three, dropping Denly to fourth man in.“I’m very excited,” the 33-year-old Kent batsman told Sky Sports. “I wasn’t too fussed really where I was batting; it’s just great to be in that starting eleven.“I’ve batted at four before, playing for Kent and throughout my career, so for me it was not a big issue.“I think Rooty just wants to get involved in the game and get up there and get out in the middle and hopefully make a lot of runs. I don’t think there’s more to it than that.”Denly batted at three in the one-off Test against Ireland last week, scoring 23 in the first innings in which England were dismissed for an embarrassing 85. He made 10 in the second innings after being run-out by Root.Root has batted at three in 41 of his 149 Test innings, averaging 31 compared to 46 at number four. He has also opened the batting on a few occasions.Rory Burns and one-day run machine Jason Roy are expected to open the batting against Australia’s fearsome pace attack tomorrow. They are England’s eighth different opening partnership in the past three years and the 16th since Andrew Strauss retired in 2012.