May 12, 2014 / 6:17 AM / in 4 years

Just Retirement annuity sale volumes at half pre budget level

LONDON, May 12 (Reuters) - Annuities provider Just Retirement Group plc said its sales are running at around half the levels seen before the British government announced an overhaul of the pensions system.

In an annual budget speech in March, Finance Minister George Osborne said the pensions system will be liberalised, effectively scrapping a requirement for pensioners to swap their retirement pots for an annuity.

The reforms hit the shares of Just Retirement, which sells individual underwritten annuities (IUA), aimed at people whose unhealthy lifestyles or poor health mean they have shorter than average life expectancy.

In a trading statement for its third quarter on Monday, Just Retirement said IUA sales were “about half pre budget levels” though sales were 288 million pounds ($485.00 million) during the three months to the end of March, up by a third from a year earlier.

$1 = 0.5938 British Pounds Reporting by Chris Vellacott. Editing by Simon Jessop

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