The at-retirement market presents significant growth opportunities for advisers and providers according to research from Dunstan Thomas.
In a poll conducted before Christmas 41.82% of respondents said greater focus on the at-retirement market would be their most significant growth opportunity in 2014.
This compares to 14.55% who said auto-enrolment was their biggest growth opportunity while 16.36% said it would be guided advice.
Key challenges for advisers in 2014 include getting wider customer acceptance of adviser charging (28.33%) while 23.33% said replacing trail commission. A further 21.67% said serving at-retirement customers effectively was their key challenge.
For providers simplifying annuity purchasing and improving at-retirement communication is the main challenge (34.43%). Operating within new charge caps for auto-enrolment defined contribution (DC) schemes was also highlighted as a key challenge by 34.43% of providers.
As Steve Webb's defined ambition (DA) agenda continues to generate interest survey participants were asked to highlight what aspects they supported.
One third (33.9%) said they supported retirement income insurance while 18.64% said they would support capital and investment return guarantees.
However, a massive 64.41% said the DWP should be focusing on boosting the appeal of workplace DC schemes.
Dunstan Thomas managing director, Natanje Holt said: "Although there are some elements of DA which are being well received by the industry - the key problem with it is the timing when the workplace pension world is already going through the largest transition in a generation with auto-enrolment well under way. This combined with significant numbers of employers still migrating from defined benefit to DC schemes, leaves not enough time and resource left to give DA the attention it probably deserves."
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