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Standard Life Pension performance discrepancies
Jim S
Posted: 19 April 2018 13:53:21(UTC)

Joined: 08/12/2016(UTC)
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I have a Standard Life workplace pension. I transfer the balance to my SIPP regularly, but that's not really relevant to what I'm asking about.

I was reviewing performance of my pension holdings in the SL funds on the SL wedsite. When I log into my pension acount on its website, I can see the performance received for each fund I hold in a 'performance' tab. I can also open a link to a 'factsheet' about each fund, which is a pdf document.

However, when I compare the fund factsheet returns over 5 years with the actual performance received (both data from its own website) there are some big differences.

Standard Life Active Plus III actual performance shows 30.4% over 5 years, whereas the Factsheet shows 43.2%

SL Blackrock Aquila Connect Pacific actual performance shows 32.15% over 5 years, whereas factsheet shows 52.1%

Standard Life Overseas Equity Pension Fund actual performance shows 56% over 5 years, but factsheet' shows a whopping 97.4%. (I invested mainly in this fund because I had looked at the factsheet stats beforehand)

One partial explanation is probably that the factsheets all show 31/12/12 to 31/12/17 performance, whereas the performance tab shows last 5 years from today. Another part of the expanation mightb be their 1% (if we believe that) annual fee.

But I don't think either can explain discrepancies of 12.8%, 20% and 41.4%!

Does anyone else with an SL pension see similar discrepancies in their account?

I have emailed them but their first response to the discrepancy in their information was to pass my query to 'the relevant team' and their second (I kid you not) was suggesting I see a financial advisor! I have gone back to them again, so we'll see what the explanation is, if any. Just wondering if this is a wider issue?

Tom Mozy
Posted: 19 April 2018 14:33:23(UTC)

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Its because the first £1 saved into your pension at the start of the 5 year period would have produced the returns on the fact sheet but no doubt you have been buying the funds monthly via pension contributions.

Your average buy cost wont be the price at the start of the 5 year period. Markets have risen

Think of a regular saver advertised at 5%. For your first monthly amount that will make 5% but your last month saving wont. 5/12. It will average 2.5% over the year.
2 users thanked Tom Mozy for this post.
Jim S on 19/04/2018(UTC), john brace on 19/04/2018(UTC)
Jim S
Posted: 19 April 2018 16:17:51(UTC)

Joined: 08/12/2016(UTC)
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Hi Tom

Thanks for the feedback. I may well be wrong but don't think the 'Cumulative Fund performance' tab on the SL pension website is customer specific, I think its what all customers receive after charges if they hold those units. On the page it say 'Cumulative performance is the total amout(%) that a fund has gained or lost over particular time periods.'

Also all holdings in my current plan have been paid in since July 2017, whereas the performance tab shows performance up to a 10 years.

But maybe I am mistaken, it is possible they do have some wierd counter-intuitive calculation going on and they have calculated returns over 5 years, including funds I transferred out under a different plan number. In that case the 5 year performance would be unusually high since most contributions were in the last 2 years.

Posted: 20 April 2018 11:12:09(UTC)

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Perhaps it's a different series (and therefore different annual management charge) to your own?

Phone and ask.
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