Prince delivers warning over future pensions

In a pre-recorded speech, The Prince of Wales, told the National Association of Pension Funds to use a longer-term investing approach or risk a “miserable future” for the next generation.

Prince Charles said the pensions industry was vital for the economy “now and in the future”, but the current focus on short term investing was “unfit for purpose”.

He went on to say that investors had a “duty” to manage risks from rising populations, climate change and “unprecedented levels” of financial indebtedness, he said.

The NAPF said it was “pleased” he was “shining a light on these issues.”

Joanne Segars, NAPF chief executive, said sustainability and environmental issues were important to long-term pension fund investors, and were the basis for providing good pensions for people in future.

Former pensions adviser to the government Ros Altmann agreed with the prince’s comments.

She said: “Pensions are meant to deliver long-term value. What we don’t want is to get hijacked by the short-term and sell our children’s future away.”

She said she understood why the short-term focus existed for political reasons, but that pension funds should not be operating on the same timetable.

The government will enrol up to nine million more people in pensions during the next five years as fears grow that people are living for longer but not saving for their old age.