The effects of the Coronavirus outbreak are being felt across the UK. It is also having an impact on the volatility of global markets. However, we would like to reassure members that robust business continuity plans are in place for the Trustee, the Company and all our professional advisers.
These contingency plans allow for the normal service of running the Scheme to continue. Our administrators have confirmed that they have sufficient resources and infrastructure to manage the volume of people working from home, although members should note that processing times for routine work may be extended slightly.
We have prioritised key administration services including pensioner payments, retirement processing and bereavements.
The investment managers for both DB and DC funds are actively monitoring the Scheme’s investments daily and taking appropriate action.
DC members should note that while immediate falls in account values are important, please remember that pensions are a long-term investment and for most people, it should be possible to ride out this volatility.
If you are close to retirement, we encourage you to think carefully and seek financial advice before making decisions about your pension based on recent events, especially as members in a default fund will already have been moved to lower-risk funds as part of the lifestyling. The My Future Focus funds are doing their jobs in moderating the volatility and protecting those approaching retirement.
If you are feeling worried about the coronavirus and what it means for you, you may find the following support services useful:
- For information about the virus and how to protect yourself, visit the NHS website
- Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service to check if you need medical help
- To find out more about self-isolating or if you’re feeling anxious or lonely, the Mind website offers information and support.