Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Pensions geeks & politics

Just a quick reflection on today's TUC trustee conference, where Lib Dem pensions minister Steve Webb spoke. I've been going to this conference in different capacities for years. It was the most hostile (in a typically restrained way) reception I've seen the conference give to any minister to date. This despite the fact that a) it's quite a specialist conference and usually respectful to speakers and b) Steve Webb has a good reputation in the pensions world.

The main issue of contention was - as you might imagine - the CPI/RPI change. To be fair Steve Webb tried to defend his previous statements, and the guy knows what he is talking about. Nonetheless the audience was not sympathetic. And talking to delegates at the end of the conference, it was notable that mention of the Lib Dems generated a more hostile reception than the Tories (who many TU members expect to be b***ards). This is a pensions conference remember.

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