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Page last updated at 10:16 GMT, Tuesday, 9 June 2009 11:16 UK

Firms cut final salary schemes

A Morrisons employee at a till in a store
BBC Radio 4's Money Box
Saturday, 6 June 2009 at 1204 BST On Radio 4 and Online

Three major employers have joined the long list of companies to downgrade their final salary pensions.

Barclays is closing its scheme to 18,000 existing members, putting them into one where the amount of their pension is not guaranteed.

BP is closing its scheme to new members and workers at supermarket chain Morrisons will in future be offered pensions based on average rather than final salary.

The biggest union at Lloyds Banking Group has asked for an assurance that the bank will not follow Barclays' move.

We speak to Joanne Segars from the National Association of Pension Funds and pensions expert John Ralfe about the latest developments.

Further information:

Third party capture

A car accident
The solicitors claim that insurers are bullying accident victims

Insurers are using underhand tactics to pressure not-at-fault car accident victims to settle claims without legal or medical advice, a road safety charity has claimed.

They allege practices such as doorstepping victims within hours of the accident, obtaining medical records under false pretences and making "bullying" phonecalls are widespread.

Samantha Washington reports and we speak to Justin Jacobs of the Association of British Insurers.

Further information:

Bereavement benefits

A coffin
An initial payment and ongoing support is often available

Grieving families could be missing out on financial support in situations where an inquest is involved and the death is reported to a coroner.

We speak to Money Box listener Ian who is campaigning for changes to the way the bereaved receive guidance on benefits.

Further information:


The FSA said that firms must treat customers fairly

People who use sale-and-rent-back schemes are to be offered protection from 1 July as the first step towards full regulation of the industry.

The schemes involve homeowners agreeing to sell their properties below market value but stay in them with the new owner as landlord.

The Financial Services Authority is taking action following concern the schemes cause "serious harm".

We speak to FSA head of mortgage policy Ed Harley and Peter Tutton, policy adviser at Citizens Advice about the news rules which will begin on 1 July.

Further information:

BBC Radio 4's Money Box was broadcast on Saturday, 6 June at 1204 BST.

The programme was repeated on Sunday, 7 June at 2102 BST.

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