The glass half-full/half-empty idiom came to mind last week after The Pensions Advisory Service published its Women and Pensions report; the report had some surprising revelations:
74% of the 1,000 women surveyed did not know how much they would get from the State in retirement;
36% did not know when their State pension would be paid; and
57% did not know if there was a shortfall in their National Insurance record.
These figures are nothing short of astonishing. I’m amazed that, given the seemingly never-ending adjustments/simplification/upheaval/tweaking of pensions, that:
26% DO know what they’ll get from the State;
64% (really?) DO know when it will be paid; and
as many as 43% DO know enough about their NI record to know if there is a shortfall.
Pension issues can be more complicated for women, as they are more likely to have a career break, or work part-time, and so have an incomplete State pension, so these figures are doubly-encouraging.
So maybe there is light at the end of the dark pensions tunnel, and it’s not just the remnants of my cheery, New Year optimism.
As for the “glass” question, it’s not nearly as important as whose round it is.
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Recognising the difficult issues posed by pensions for many charities the National Association Of Pension Funds is holding a free seminar for charities in London on Thursday 6th February 2014. The event has gathered a series of specialist speakers with expertise on pensions and the charity sector to provide attendees with in depth knowledge on the issues faced and the potential options available.
The event is designed to be highly interactive with participants being given the opportunity to ask questions and feedback views to regulators, representative bodies and specialist advisers. This is undoubtedly an event not to be missed.
More information on the event is available here: NAPF Charities Forum
While this may not be a particularly cheery message, there is unfortunately no magic wand that can be waved when it comes to pensions. Simply put, the only way to avoid having to work longer to fund your retirement is to save more and, in particular, start saving earlier. Read more of Alan Collins comments on a new era for UK pensions saving in the Scotsman