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Pensions are stuck in a doom loop

The response to every pensions crisis sows the seeds of the next

By John Kay   December 2018

Photo: Kirsty O'Connor/PA Wire/PA Images

In 1991 the ebullient fraudster Robert Maxwell disappeared from his yacht and was found to have looted the Daily Mirror pension funds to support his crumbling business empire. The inevitable and appropriate result was a raft of regulations of occupational pensions. Shortly after the turn of the millennium, the dotcom bubble burst, share prices almost halved, and many companies suddenly found the assets they’d earmarked to pay for pensions were woefully inadequate; some found devious ways to wriggle out of paying them. Cue another…

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