Budget announcement on QE to drive yet more pension pots abroad
Britons on the cusp of retirement were dealt a crushing blow yesterday, as George Osborne announced in his 2013 budget that the Bank of England’s controversial quantitative easing programme would remain in place.
The Bank of England has been given license to print more money with the Asset Purchase Programme, after growth forecasts were once again cut by the Chancellor.
This is a crushing blow for anyone who is nearing retirement. Further quantitative easing will keep gilt yields down which in turn are highly likely to keep annuity rates, on which future retirement incomes are based, near historic lows.
Since it was initiated, QE has already made millions permanently poorer and many thousands more each week will now also receive a reduced retirement income as the programme is extended.
It’s likely that there will be an even greater number of Britons who will consider transferring their pension funds out of the UK as they seek to “safeguard their hard-earned money from QE’s adverse effects.
For those buying an annuity, the outlook is bleak and it is unlikely to improve any time soon. Therefore, I would fully expect more and more of those who can – namely expats and those considering retiring overseas – to transfer their pension pots into an HMRC-recognised Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS)
In addition, there are other distinct plusses. For instance, on your death your funds will not be subject to UK taxes of up to 55 per cent, you can drawdown 25 per cent as a tax-free cash sum, and there are a greater number of investment and currency options.
Last month, the deVere Group confirmed that it transferred 35 per cent more UK pensions into Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) during 2012, compared to the year before.