Parliament committee wants govt to work with FCA on pension scams

Hannah Godfrey reports...

The Work and Pensions Select Committee (WPC) has recommended the FCA expand its list of unauthorised firms into a wider public database.

In a WPC report on pension costs and transparency, the parliamentary committee recommended outside groups assist the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in keeping the list up to date.

The committee is made up of MPs from a number of parties and exists to check and report on government departments. It said the financial watchdog’s list of unauthorised firms should be regularly updated by governmental organisations involved in pension scams and act as a co-ordinated early warning system.

At present, a searchable list of unauthorised firms can be found on the FCA’s website. The list details the name of a firm and the date it was added to the list.

Review scam resources

Elsewhere in the report, the WPC, which is chaired by independent MP Frank Field (pictured), recommended the FCA review whether it dedicates sufficient resources to combat active pension scams, protect individuals and prevent new pension scams appearing.

The committee’s recommendation came in response to comments made by regulator representatives during a WPC meeting in February, when it said around 10 of its 3,700 staff were working on pension scams.

The FCA later clarified it was referring to the dedicated team that work with other staff across the organisation who may be looking at scams in specific areas, for example, self-invested personal pensions.