According to an online survey conducted by the UK's National Association of Pension Funds, consumers are most concerned about regulation when looking at pension schemes.

The survey found that almost two thirds (63%) of respondents said the regulatory burden was among their top three concerns. If concerns about EU legislation and restrictions on reforming benefits are added in, three quarters of pension schemes said they were worried about regulatory issues.

Improving longevity and scheme deficits ranked second and third among pension scheme concerns.

National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) chief executive Joanne Segars said: Peter Hain will find deregulation at the top of his in-tray when he takes over at the DWP. The clear message from pension schemes is that they want to see a concerted effort to lighten the regulatory burden.

The DWP has sounded serious about cutting through red tape so employers find it easier to provide good occupational pensions at a reasonable cost. Pension schemes will want to see this momentum maintained under the new secretary of state. He will shortly receive the recommendations of the independent de-regulatory reviewers. This must bring forward some serious proposals to help support scheme sponsors, Ms Segars concluded.