UPDATED: McVey backs industry-led dashboard

Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey has backed the industry to deliver the pensions dashboard, after months of speculation surrounding the project.

McVey said yesterday, 4 September, that the Department for Work and Pensions backed the industry to “take a leading role” in order to “harness their knowledge”, while the government continues to engage on the model.

It was reported in July that McVey is looking to "kill off" the project, first set to be launched in April 2019, which she feels should not be provided by the state, and that it will distract from the government’s attempt to implement Universal Credit.

McVey said: “The pensions landscape is transforming and the dashboard offers a great opportunity to give people straightforward access to their pension information in a clear and simple format – bringing together an individual’s savings in a single place online.

“It’s clear there is broad support for the concept of a dashboard and its potential to empower those putting money away for their futures.

“By taking a leading role, and harnessing their knowledge, industry can develop a dashboard that works for pensions holders – and government will help facilitate this.”

A petition looking to save the pension dashboard from extinction has now gained over 180,000 signatures since it started.

Last week, part of the industry took to Twitter to debate whether they saw an industry back dashboard would be the best way forward, with concerns raised over how the data would be provided without government.

Royal London director of policy, Steve Webb, questioned how useful a dashboard would be without state pension data, but today said it was a "huge breakthrough" for the industry.

“This announcement is a huge breakthrough after a period of uncertainty. There is much that the industry can do to deliver a dashboard, but only the government can supply vitally important state pension data and only the government can legislate to make sure that the dashboard’s coverage is comprehensive," he said.

"Backed by this renewed commitment by the government, the whole pension industry now needs to work together to drive forward this much-needed initiative."

The Department for Work and Pensions said the feasibility study will be expected in due course.

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