Guest comment: Work to be done on ethnic minority group data

While there has been significant pensions policy and demographic change in the UK over the past two decades, one impediment to progress has remained in the form of a lack of robust data and evidence on the financial experiences and behaviour of people from ethnic minority groups.

We know there are labour market and wealth inequalities that result in poorer average retirement outcomes for Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Black African/Caribbean people and others.

However, within this data, there are generally insufficient sample sizes for further breakdowns by age, gender, or income level, which would allow analysis of how experiences vary between people with different characteristics.

This lack of consistent, national level evidence is a barrier to a deeper understanding of all the different elements effecting poorer outcomes, and creates difficulties for the design and execution of policies which aim to reduce inequalities in later life.

The PPI, sponsored by Which?, is conducting research into how national surveys could better cover the experiences of people from all ethnic backgrounds. But the work should not stop there.

The government and the financial services industry will need to engage in ongoing conversations, supported by consistent, reliable data, about how the experience (for many) of intergenerational disadvantage can be interrupted, and ways of enabling better later life outcomes instituted in their place.

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