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U.K. Department for Work and Pensions taking over retirement dashboard project

The U.K. government is taking over oversight of a retirement dashboard in efforts to deliver good information on retirement to consumers, Guy Opperman, member of Parliament and parliamentary undersecretary of state for pensions and financial inclusion, said Thursday at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association's annual conference in Manchester.

The Department for Work and Pensions will lead this work in the government, taking over the work from the Association of British Insurers, which completed a prototype.

"The aim of the dashboard is to present a clear picture of pension information in one secure online location," Mr. Opperman said. It would aggregate all retirement accounts in one place.

"The industry project delivered a prototype infrastructure showing the technology works," Mr. Opperman said. "Although we have made progress ... there (are) a number issues to work out such as whether to compel the schemes to participate."

The DWP will initially lead a feasibility study building on the work of ABI considering all aspects of timing, costs, data and regulation. Mr. Opperman said a more complete update will be available in the spring of 2018. "There is no doubt the dashboard will happen," he said.

During his speech at the conference, Mr. Opperman identified actions that the government could take in order to contribute to better retirement outcomes. The minister named initiatives he is supporting in addition to the dashboard within the government, such as a single financial guidance body and the extension of automatic enrollment.

The U.K. pensions minister called on pension funds to come to the government with solutions. "(We need to take) a collective approach to solve problems we all know exist," he said.

"The government can solve some problems by regulation but not all of them. To a greater degree, you solve your own problems, the less we need to regulate."