Transfer values remain stable over May - XPS

Transfer values were recorded at £241,500 over May, close to the £251,000 peak recorded in March, XPS Pensions Group has revealed.

In its latest Transfer Value Index, values rose to nearly record highs over the month, despite finishing below the £242,300 recorded at the end of April.

According to the group, the rise was driven by a fall in government bond yields over the month, offset by a fall in inflation expectations.

XPS Group senior consultant, Mark Barlow, said: “Transfer values continue to run near record highs and, with the current political uncertainty, it doesn’t seem likely that they’ll fall significantly in the near future.

“There’s been a slight increase in members transferring during May. The index seems to be settling at a figure of around 1 per cent of eligible members transferring each year but we will see whether the current high transfer values result in more members taking a transfer in the coming months.”

As of 1 May, the group updated its assumptions to reflect recent life expectancy data, reducing the index by around 2.5 per cent.

The group said the number of transfers also increased as well as how many members chose to take their transfer value.

The recently launched Pensions Transfer Gold Standard has reportedly signed up 800 advisers, according to the Personal Finance Society, raising the quality and transparency of financial advice on defined benefit transfers.

Barlow added: “We are really pleased that the industry appears to be embracing the recently-launched Pension Transfer Gold Standard.

“High quality advice is crucial to ensure that members make the right decision and aren’t tempted by such high values. Particularly as we are in pension scams awareness fortnight, any steps to improve the overall quality and transparency of advice has to be a good thing.”

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