Coronavirus: Stay calm and do not rush financial decisions

Regulators have urged savers to keep calm and not rush to make any decisions about their pension in response to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), supported by The Money and Pensions Service (MaPS), have voiced their concerns that fears over the impact of the pandemic on markets and personal finances may make savers more vulnerable to scams or making a decision that could damage their long-term interests, saying:

“The coronavirus outbreak has impacted on all kinds of companies, including those listed on the stock market. As a result, markets have been volatile and are likely to remain so for a while. This can have an impact on pensions, leading to additional worry for savers. It can lead to an increase in scams, as unscrupulous people try to take advantage of the situation.”

The TPR, the FCA and MaPS are therefore urging savers to take their time and visit the Pensions Advisory Service website for free plain English pensions guidance before making any decisions about their retirement savings, and to go to the ScamSmart website to learn how to protect themselves from pensions scams. This includes people already retired who are thinking again about their options.

Throughout this period, TPR, the FCA, MaPS and Government departments will be working together to tackle any additional risks arising from the current uncertainty. They are urging savers worried about their retirement savings to do four things:

1. Visit the Pensions Advisory Service website for guidance on how coronavirus may have impacted their pensions.

2. If they are aged 55 or over and considering drawing their pension, booking a Pension Wise guidance session to fully understand their options.

3. Using a FCA-authorised financial adviser permitted to provide pension advice to help make the best decision for their own personal circumstances.

4. Learn how to protect themselves.

For more information, please see here.

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