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Number of transfers out of DB schemes in 2017/18

FOI reference - FOI 2018-05-09(b)
Date - 09/05/2018

Request

I am aware that TPR has in the past provided information on the volume of defined benefit (DB) to defined contribution (DC) transfers in response to past Freedom of Information (FOI) requests. I believe that information for 2016/17 has been supplied in an FOI dated 22 May last year.

I am writing under the terms of the FOI Act to request an update of that data. I appreciate that you may not yet have full financial year data for 2017/18, but if you have monthly or quarterly data for part of 2017/18 that would be most helpful. I am interested in the numbers of transfers together with any other data you may hold on those transfers such as average values, total value etc.

Response

I can confirm that we hold some of the information falling within scope of your request.

Information we are able to supply

Please note that the FOI we published last year (FOI 2018-05-22) referred to the number of people who transferred out of their DB schemes in total, not specifically to a DC scheme

For the period 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018, DB pension schemes have reported approximately 72,700 transfers out. Again this is not specifically to a DC scheme. The total value of those transfers was approximately £14.3 billion. However, not all schemes reporting that transfers took place have reported exactly how many transfers they carried out and therefore taking into account non-responses, we estimate the actual figure to be in the region of 100,000.

As noted not all schemes have reported on scheme transfers; though it is a requirement for a scheme to submit a completed scheme return, it is not a requirement to provide the number of transfers and therefore all supplied figures are indicative only.

Please note that the data reported for 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018 are based on scheme submissions as of 16 April 2018. They relate to transfers in the 12 month period covered by the reporting schemes’ most recent annual report and accounts relative to the effective date of the schemes’ submission of information to TPR.

All figures above are based on data reported to the regulator by pension schemes and their managers or administrators. Though the figures show the total number of transfers out of defined benefit schemes, it is important to emphasise that this is not a total of defined benefit to defined contribution scheme transfer, which members may have requested to access the pension freedoms for example.

In addition some attempt has been made to identify and correct information that is erroneous or irrelevant this has been corrected, but we have not carried out a full audit of the information supplied.