Theresa May voices support for dashboard

Prime Minister Theresa May has reaffirmed her support for the delivery and launch of the pensions dashboard.

The project, designed to provide consumers with a simple, hi-tech way of checking all of their pension pots in one online space, has also received further support from Pensions Minister, Guy Opperman.

Speaking to ITV, May said: “Bringing pensions online will transform retirement planning – giving people straightforward access to all their pension information in one place.

“I welcome the industry’s commitment to make this new technology a reality.”

The dashboard was first announced in 2016 and the long-awaited feasibility study is expected to be published by Opperman in parliament today, with the first dashboard predicted to go live in 2019.

Commenting on the dashboard, Opperman said that it “has the potential to revolutionise the way we all think and plan for later life”.

He added: “Having pensions information at the touch of a screen will ensure better-informed, more engaged savers and help many more people to plan effectively for retirement.”

Opperman has been vocal about the dashboard in recent months, calling for the industry to “get on with it” during the PLSA annual conference.

In the background documents for the 2018 Budget, it was revealed that an additional £5m of funding had been allocated to support the launch of the dashboard.

The documents also stated: “The government is taking steps to support the launch of pensions dashboards, innovative tools that will for the first time allow an individual to see their pension pots, including their state pension, in one place."

The new technology is intended to make things easier for consumers to check their data and help them make better financial decisions.

Furthermore, the government plans to legislate to protest dashboard user’s personal data so it is made available appropriately by pension schemes.

AJ Bell senior analyst Tom Selby commented: “For months the pension dashboard project looked set for the scrapheap as the Government fretted about the design of the new system.

“The fact Number 10 has thrown its weight behind the plans can only be a good thing, while confirmation state pension data will be made available is a step in the right direction.

“However, without legislation in place requiring all schemes to participate the early rollout will be limited in the extreme. While modern platforms and pension providers competing for new customers will want to get involved, older schemes operating outdated technology will likely need a kick up the backside."

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