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Pensions anxiety causing sleepless nights

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03/04/2008

The recent turmoil in the equity markets is causing one in three middle-aged and older adults to lose sleep, a YouGov survey in conjunction with The Hartford shows.

The survey revealed that UK adults over the age of 45 are already feeling the effects of recent turmoil in the equity markets and are experiencing greater levels of anxiety about their finances.

Those who are 55 and older expressed the most anxiety over the market turbulence with 47% of respondents in this age group stating that they are very concerned or fairly concerned that the market conditions will hurt their pension. This compares to 38% among the 45-54 age group and 32% among the 35-44 age group.

More than one in five UK adults who responded to the survey also said that they would be very or fairly willing to pay an annual fee in exchange for a guarantee that their pension savings could not fall, even if the market does.

John Enos, managing director of marketing and distribution at The Hartford, said: “In volatile equity markets, a guarantee on your retirement savings can provide invaluable peace of mind.

“This survey demonstrates that a large part of investing is psychological – market volatility can cause investors to feel greater levels of stress or even lose sleep.”

The Hartford survey underlines the challenges faced by savers in the current UK equity markets. When questioned on their financial plans for the next few months, less than half of the survey respondents said that they would continue with their normal investment strategy, with 12% saying that they did not know how they would change their strategy.

Despite this, just 2% of survey respondents said that they had sought professional advice as a result of the recent market conditions.

 

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