While the framework was based on the Royal Mail proposal, the DWP said it would “structure our legislation to allow us to move promptly to other forms of CDC benefit provision”, including for multi-employer arrangements and “decumulation-only” models. “Royal Mail and CWU have been campaigning together to bring about this legislation, building a cross-party alliance of supporters in both houses of parliament as well as working with government. We now look ahead to the next stage, and ultimately, delivering the UK’s first CDC pension.”Jon Millidge, chief risk and governance officer, Royal Mail “The pensions industry desperately needs innovation if we are to enable people to retire with dignity and security. The CWU… will be delighted to prove that CDC options will prove to be a watershed moment in pension provision and benefit working people way beyond our own membership.”Terry Pullinger, deputy general secretary for postal, CWUGuy Opperman, minister for pensions and financial inclusion, said of the government’s consultation: “There were encouraging signs of a growing interest in CDC [arrangements] among employers and commercial providers outside of the Royal Mail and CWU.“I expect this will increase further as all parties become more accustomed to this type of provision. There are 140,000 postmen and women working for Royal Mail in depots up and down the UK. It is clear these employees and the CWU are very engaged and supportive of CDC [schemes].”Inter-generational fairnessSome respondents to the DWP’s consultation were critical of the plan to introduce CDC schemes, highlighting perceived inter-generational unfairness.However, the DWP said it was “confident” that its chosen approach would “not create new inequalities in the occupational pensions system”, highlighting that imbalances between age cohorts exist in other forms of pension arrangement.It added that its regulatory regime for CDC plans would “require all schemes to have a sustainability and continuity strategy that assesses whether the scheme continues to provide value to members and properly addresses the risk of inter-generational imbalance”.The paper also advocated a “best estimate” approach to valuing scheme assets, and opted against requiring new CDC schemes to build a financial buffer to soften the impact of asset price volatility. However, it said that it would not outlaw the creation of buffers if other CDC providers wished to introduce one.CommunicationsThe DWP emphasised the importance of clear communications with members, particularly around the circumstances in which benefits could be increased or reduced. This would form an important part of CDC regulation, it indicated.David Fairs, executive director of regulatory policy, analysis and advice at TPR, said in a statement: “We will be working closely with government to ensure clear, effective and efficient regulation is in place and that communications to members are also clear and comprehensive.”Rob Harper, partner at consultancy firm Hymans Robertson, added: “Ensuring clear member communications and strong governance are vital if CDC is to succeed and I’m glad the government has recognised this in its response.“Pension provision is already far too complicated for many savers to fully understand and early transparency from employers and providers will aid member understanding of what CDC really means for them.”Questionable timelineIn his introduction to the DWP’s paper, Guy Opperman said legislation would be put forward “as soon as parliamentary time allows” – a caveat added to several other recent pension documents published by the department.Sir Steve Webb – who pushed for the introduction of so-called ‘defined ambition’ schemes during his time as pensions minister from 2010 to 2015 – warned it could still be many years before the first CDC schemes are launched. The UK government is set to legislate for collective defined contribution (CDC) schemes after more than a year of negotiation and consultation with industry stakeholders.In a paper published today, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) outlined its framework for the introduction of CDC schemes for the first time in the UK.The model was based on a plan put forward by Royal Mail and the Communication Workers’ Union (CWU), which have been lobbying for CDC legislation for the past year, after selecting it as the best option for settling a long-running dispute over pay and conditions.According to the DWP’s paper, all new CDC schemes would have to be approved by the Pensions Regulator (TPR), in a similar manner to the authorisation regime recently introduced for defined contribution master trusts. Royal Mail and its workers’ union have been campaigning for CDC legislation for more than a year“Even for the Royal Mail it is likely to be several years before a scheme could be up and running,” said Sir Steve – now director of policy at Royal London.“If other employers want to use a different model, this could need new primary legislation and we would probably be talking about the mid-2020s before further schemes could be in place.“I strongly suspect that the government has very limited legal resources as civil servants are being diverted to work on Brexit-related legislation, and this is limiting their ability to produce more comprehensive legislation on CDC.”The DWP’s consultation paper is available here.
UPDATE: The teams announced the trade Friday evening: Pham and Cronenworth from Tampa Bay to San Diego in exchange for Dozier, Edwards and a player to be named.UPDATE 2: Snell apologized to Edwards for calling him a name. Snell says he was upset that the Rays traded Pham and meant no disrespect toward Edwards. He will be joining a San Diego outfield group that includes Manuel Margot, Wil Myers, Franchy Cordero, Josh Naylor and Grisham. Expect Preller to explore deals involving part of that group at next week’s Winter Meetings in San Diego.Cronenworth, 25, moves this grade up slightly. His hitting took a leap last season at Triple-A Durham (a professional career-high 10 home runs and .949 OPS) and he also showed promise on the mound (two unearned runs allowed in seven appearances, primarily as an opener, covering 7 1/3 innings). The former University of Michigan closer did have trouble throwing strikes, however (eight walks).Overall: It’s always interesting with these teamsAs always, the Rays are trying to stay strong and save money. The Padres are spending more to become slightly better. The last big trade between the organizations, in December 2014, became known for the Nationals getting Trea Turner from the Padres as part of a complicated three-team swap. Five years later, it’s Edwards leaving the Padres’ organization, this time straight to the Rays. ORIGINAL ARTICLE:The Rays and Padres were nearing completion of a trade early Friday that would send outfielder Tommy Pham and two-way prospect Jake Cronenworth from Tampa Bay to San Diego in exchange for outfielder Hunter Renfroe, middle infield prospect Xavier Edwards and a second prospect or a player to be named, according to multiple reports.Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (subscription required) reported that the teams will announce the trade later Friday after medical records are reviewed. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic first reported that a swap was close (subscription required).WINTER MEETINGS 2019: Dates, rumors, top FAs availableWhen completed, the trade will be San Diego’s third in 10 days. The Padres acquired infielder Jurickson Profar from the A’s in exchange for catcher Austin Allen and a player to be named on Dec. 2, and they acquired right-hander Kyle Davies and outfielder Trent Grisham from the Brewers on Nov. 27 in exchange for left-hander Eric Lauer, infielder Luis Urias and a player to be named.The Rays will be making their fourth trade of the offseason, with the previous biggest name being Jose De Leon.SN grades what has been reported about the Pham-Renfroe swap:Rays: B+The plus is for Edwards, a 20-year-old second baseman/shortstop who was No. 5 in MLB Pipeline’s ranking of Padres prospects. The knock on him appears to be a lack of power (just one home run in 756 minor league plate appearances), but he has shown early signs of a strong hit tool (.328/.395/.399 slash line in those PAs) and top speed (56 career steals). Rays left-hander Blake Snell, in his real-time reaction to the trade, sounded unimpressed by Edwards, whom he called a “slapd—” prospect. The Padres drafted Edwards 38th overall in 2018 out of a South Florida high school.Renfroe, 27, is four years younger than the 31-year-old Pham and has more raw power (a career-high 33 home runs in 2019). He also possesses one of the best outfield throwing arms in the game, something that would make him a fit in right field and allow Austin Meadows to take Pham’s place in left. On the flip side, Renfroe is far worse than Pham at getting on base (a .289 OBP in 2019 despite a career-high 46 walks). Topkin pointed out that Renfroe played with a bone spur in his right foot in the second half and had surgery in October.As is usually the case, Tampa Bay will be saving a lot of money with the trade. MLB Trade Rumors projects Renfroe will make $3.4 million next year in arbitration, far less than half of Pham’s $8.6 million arb projection. The Rays will also gain two extra years of control: Renfroe won’t be eligible to become a free agent until after the 2023 season; Pham can become a free agent after the 2021 season.Padres: BThe deal shows how serious general manager A.J. Preller is about trying to make the roster stronger in 2020.Pham slashed .273/.369/.450 (119 OPS+) with 21 home runs in 2019; that power output was in line with his previous two seasons (23 in 2017, 21 in 2018). He also adds speed to the offense (he tied a career high with 25 stolen bases last season), although Fangraphs’ calculations pegged him as a barely above-average baserunner. His corner defense (1 DRS in left field in 2019) should play OK at Petco Park.Pham will also add a fiery on-field persona, which should come in handy in games vs. the NL West-rival Dodgers and Giants.