Wealth Manager - the site for professional investment managers

Register free for our breaking news email alerts with analysis and cutting edge commentary from our award winning team. Registration only takes a minute.

Standard Life eyes ‘significant’ chance as annuity sales slide 50%

Standard Life eyes ‘significant’ chance as annuity sales slide 50%

A slump in annuity sales has not dulled Standard Life’s optimism it can take advantage of the big opportunity to plug the savings gap.

In a trading update, the Scottish-based firm said it welcomed the changes in the savings regime introduced in the Budget earlier this year, which saw the requirement to buy an annuity on retirement scrapped.  

The dramatic changes sparked a 50% slump in Standard Life's annuity sales in the first quarter. 'While it will be some time before long-term trends become clear, the negative profit impact of the changes will reflect the relatively small size of our annuity business,’ the firm told the market.

However, it welcomed the change, along with the introduction of a charge cap on workplace pensions, believing the positives outweigh the negatives.

‘We are pleased to have clarity on the charge cap for workplace pension schemes and we are well placed to meet the cap confirmed by the DWP. We also welcome the changes to the savings regime announced in the recent Budget and view it as a positive step forward,’ Standard Life chief executive David Nish (pictured) said.  

‘We see this as a significant opportunity to address the UK’s savings gap by making long-term savings and pensions an even more attractive choice for savers through simplicity, choice and flexibility.’

Standard Life also said it was seeing strong demand for its ‘Good to Go’ online auto-enrolment solution, which launched at the end of last year and is designed to make life easy for employers setting up schemes.    

‘We are seeing continued demand from larger employers and strong interest from the significant number of SME businesses who will implement pension schemes over the next few months under auto enrolment,’ Nish said.

‘We have already secured over 400 new schemes through our new “Good to go” proposition since its launch.’

SLI strength

Assets under administration at Standard Life increased by 1.5% in the first three months of the year to hit £247.8 billion. Fee revenue was up 12% to £374 million.

Its investment engine, Standard Life Investments (SLI), continues to shine with assets under management rising 2.3% to £104.8 billion.

Net inflows stood at £2 billion, of which third party business accounted for £1.6 billion through the higher margin wholesale channel and ‘uneven’ pattern of institutional business.

SLI’s effort to extend its global reach also paid dividends, with inflows outside of the UK increasing 23%  to £1.6 billion.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.
Citywire TV
1 Comment Play Citywire Scotland: how wealth managers use new tech

Citywire Scotland: how wealth managers use new tech

We caught up with a few wealth managers at our annual event in Gleneagles to find out what technological innovations they are employing across their businesses.

1 Comment Play CEO Tapes: Buxton to Gilbert - ‘my Glencore quandary’

CEO Tapes: Buxton to Gilbert - ‘my Glencore quandary’

Do not miss the first two minutes of this film as Richard Buxton shares how he has been challenged by a client for owning shares in a certain company.

Play CEO Tapes: the huge opportunities for asset managers

CEO Tapes: the huge opportunities for asset managers

From tech disruption, retirement and poaching, the CEO discuss the opportunities for their businesses in this episode.

Read More
Wealth Manager on Twitter