Pension Pain for Britons

Posted by Ian Carpenter in Personal Finance on 12 May 2014 - Ian is Operations Director at checkmyfile

New research by professional services company Towers Watson reveals that nearly one in four Britons will not retire until they are in their 70s.

The findings highlight an increasingly negative pensions outlook from UK adults; 23% of those surveyed expect to work beyond 70, an increase of 10% since 2010, while 5% are even more pessimistic and don’t expect to retire until they are in their 80s.

That Monday morning feeling is likely to be extended for a few more years as workers realise that retirement might not come as easily as it did for the previous generation. More than half of those surveyed don’t believe that they are currently saving enough to build a decent pension fund.

John Ball of Towers Watson, explains, “Retirement security is becoming an increasingly important issue for most employees, especially among those approaching retirement".

Older workers are more positive about their retirement prospects. A third of workers aged 20 to 39 years old expect to work into their 70s, with only one in five of those aged between 40 and 49 predicting the same.

Help is on the way, but it’s taking time. A gradual roll-out of the auto-enrolment scheme is now taking place, and will require employers to offer a workplace pension scheme to its employees. Unless an employee specifically opts out, employers must offer a workplace scheme which matches the employee’s contributions. Along with the additional element of tax relief, a pension pot can then be built up to help make retirement financially easier. Unfortunately the slow roll-out of the scheme means that it is not set to be in place across all UK companies until 2018.

The government recently announced plans to provide guidance to pensioners on how to save and organise their savings. A good idea, but along with the introduction auto-enrolment pensions it’s likely to be too little too late for many UK workers.

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