You are here: Home - Retirement - Retirement planning - News -

Auto-enrolment exemptions fuel pensions gender gap

Written by: Emma Lunn
Auto-enrolment exemptions and low engagement mean women save less than men, according to Aegon.

More than double the number of women (34 per cent) compared to men (16 per cent) don’t know how much they have saved in their pension.

Research from Aegon found that women (40 per cent) are more likely than men (32 per cent) to have never estimated their income needs for retirement.

In addition to this, the number of women without any pension arrangements has nearly doubled from 7 per cent in 2017 to 13 per cent, and remains higher than the proportion of men without pension arrangements.

Aegon said the two main causes of this are a lack of pensions awareness among women, and the auto-enrolment criteria, which are more likely to exclude women from saving for retirement in the workplace.

Kate Smith, head of pensions at Aegon, said: “It’s hugely disappointing to see that despite the attention being given to addressing the gender pay gap, this increased awareness does not seem to have inspired women to show more interest in their pensions.

“Knowledge is key to helping solve the gender pension gap so it’s really worrying to see that more than a third of women remain in the dark about what they have saved for retirement – if anything at all.

“We already know that women are at a disadvantage in terms of pay, childcare responsibilities and costs and reduced working hours but by not having a complete picture of their financial situation, they are putting themselves at a further disadvantage. That picture includes their pension.

“Showing an interest in what you have saved in a pension or what you might need, could be the difference between the retirement you want and the retirement you get. The first step is to ensure you are on the right track to get it, you can only do this by getting as much information as possible and this applies to both men and women.”

The lack of interest in pension savings is exacerbated by the fact that women are also being let down by the current auto-enrolment criteria. Women are more likely to be lower earners and work part time, and so are less likely to meet the eligibility criteria for auto-enrolment. Self-employed women risk being in a similar position without access to auto-enrolment.

“Auto-enrolment needs to be more inclusive to include lower earners, who are disproportionately female,” said Smith, “A solution needs to be found for individuals with multiple jobs, each below £10,000 allowing them to benefit automatically from an employer contribution. This will help to close the gender pension gap.”

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

Could you make a Dieselgate claim?

An estimated 500,000 Mercedes-Benz owners could each be eligible to claim compensation of up to £96,000.
Could you make a Dieselgate claim?

The Android app that steals your bank details

McAfee has warned that smartphone malware from Brazil could trick Android users into downloading dodgy apps fr...
The Android app that steals your bank details

Multi-jobbers missing out on millions in pension contributions

People who hold more than one job are at risk of a poorer retirement due to missing out on employer pension co...
Multi-jobbers missing out on millions in pension contributions

Ryanair jetting towards US flights for £10

Ryanair is on course to achieve its long-held ambition of offering transatlantic flights to the US – and the...

Investing in car parks: a good vehicle for income seekers?

As the search for income continues, many investors are turning to alternatives, with car parks becoming increa...

A quick guide to guarantor loans – in association with Guarantor Loan Comparison

Considering a guarantor loan or becoming a guarantor yourself? Read our essential guide...

Results round-up: Companies to watch this week

Mulberry and more will face the music this week.

Product launches of the week

Select Property Group, Schroders, Leeds Building Society and more have exciting news this week.

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
Is your financial health check overdue?

To mark 'Talk Money Talk Pensions Week', which is taking place from 18-22 November, Jeannie Boyle reveals the key times...