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15.7m Brits lack adequate pension plans

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08/08/2012
Nearly half of Brits don't expect to use a pension to fund their retirement, according to a report by Barings Asset Management.

According to the survey of 1,567 workers, 44% of people aged over 18 will not choose a pension as the way to fund their retirement.

This equates to 15.7m in the country as a whole, which Barings say highlights ‘a lack of effective pension planning by a significant number of UK adults.’

Marino Valensise, chief investment officer at Barings, commented: “It is very surprising to see just how varied retirement funding sources have become for many people in the UK.

“While diversification is crucial to best-practice asset management, the suitability of some of these sources can be questioned, such as a reliance on inheritance. 

“Overall, the most challenging finding is that nearly half of the adult UK population admit to not having a formal pension at all.”

The research shows that many people rely on property, cash and in some cases inheritance to fund their retirement.

The number of people who expect that cash will form part of their retirement planning increased from 26% in the last survey in 2011 to 29% this time.

The number that selected property as forming part of their retirement fund also increased two percentage points to 29%.

Marino continues: “It is astounding that over one in ten people have focused all of their retirement planning on property. This suggests poor planning in terms of asset allocation, and a poor understanding of the risks involved, by large numbers of people in the UK.

“Assets such as cash and property, and instruments such as ISAs and investment trusts, can play an active role in retirement planning if managed correctly.

“For those people that have put aside assets for retirement, it is critical to make sure that these are allocated effectively and efficiently, properly adjusted for risk and with a clear understanding of the timescale involved.”

The research also highlights that 6m people are relying on inheritance to plan their pensions. Barings say that the expectation of receiving inheritance is more acute in upper and middle classes.

However Barings highlight that with the average UK inheritance estimated at around £45,000 per person, many people may be overestimating the role inherited assets may play in helping fund a retirement.

The study also found that one in four, 8.8m people, admit they simply don’t know how they will fund their retirement.

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