Almost half of women not confident of comfortable retirement

Nearly half of women (49 per cent) do not feel confident that they will have a comfortable retirement, compared to 33 per cent of men, according to research from Aegon.

The lack of confidence comes in the lead up to the equalisation of the male and female state pension age on 6 November, for the first time in over 70 years.

The state pension age will change to 65 on 6 November 2018, before increasing to 66 on 5 December 2018 and continuing to gradually increase following that date.

Aegon pensions director, Steven Cameron commented: “On 6 November this gender pensions gap will become even wider as the women’s state pension age rises to age 65, bringing it up to the male age. While some may see this a step forward towards equal treatment, it actually means women are a further step back compared to men with pensions.”

On average, women have less in their pensions than men, creating the concern that the equalisation of the state pension age will worsen the gender pay gap, as getting state pension from an earlier age offered some compensation to women.

Aegon research shows that by the time women reach age 50, they have on average only half the pension savings (£56,000) compared to their male counterparts, who will have saved on average £112,000.

Furthermore, women aged 30 need to contribute an extra £21 per month to close the gap on men, and by age 50, this will have risen to an extra £360 a month.

Cameron concluded: “While limited progress is being made to close the gender pay gap, other factors impacting women’s ability to save adequately for retirement including career breaks to raise a family or to care for elderly parents, aren’t going anywhere.

“The equalisation of state pension age, and future planned increases are a further prompt to women to think about how much they’ll need to save privately for a comfortable retirement and it can be well worth seeking financial advice.”

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