AUTO-ENROLMENT ONLY HALF THE BATTLE FOR WOMEN

The latest Government review into pensions auto-enrolment shows 9 million employees are now enrolled into a workplace scheme and employer contributions have been on the rise reaching a record 61% in 2016-to-2017. However, new data from online pension planning tool, Pension Monster, suggests women are still lagging behind when it comes to saving for retirement.

The findings show only a third (32%) of consumers currently using Pension Monster to review their pension options are female suggesting men generally take more active interest in their savings. And worryingly this lack of engagement appears to correlate with their pension pot sizes, with women accumulating just £70,000, less than half the male users’ £192,000 average pot size.

The career breaks and part-time jobs many women take during their working lives all contribute to this pensions shortfall. As it stands women need guidance to bridge the pensions gap. Significantly, data from Pension Monster shows women with access to professional financial advice have a significantly bigger pot size of around £125,000compared to those earning a similar salary and who are unadvised.

Employers can help their employees engage more with their pensions by hosting online tools like Pension Monster within their workplace websites. This can provide a tailored report to show what their options are and how much is needed to save to meet their retirement goals.

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Peter Bradshaw, National Accounts Director, Pension Monster commented:

“Despite the initial success of auto-enrolment, efforts to maintain this level of engagement are necessary. Women in particular will benefit from early and ongoing planning and guidance. Considering women will likely take career breaks for child care, and the fact life expectancy for women has reached 83 years old*, they have the most to benefit from early and ongoing planning and guidance.”

“Advisers should take advantage of online tools to encourage more engagement to help their clients plan for a better retirement.”

*ONS National life tables, UK: 2014 to 2016

Further information on Pension Monster can be found at

https://www.selectapension.com/services/pension-monster

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