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Half of Britons think retirees will not fritter away pension

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16/04/2014
Just over half of Britons think people can be trusted to spend their retirement savings wisely following the new pension reforms announced in the Budget.

In a dramatic overhaul of the pensions system, Chancellor George Osborne said from April 2015 people will be able to take their whole pension pot as a cash lump sum, instead of having to buy an annuity – an insurance product offering a guaranteed income.

While the new rules have prompted critics to suggest retirees will fritter away their pension savings on luxuries, research by the insurer Aviva found 52 per cent of consumers think people can be trusted to spend their retirement savings wisely.

The study also found that 80 per cent of people have some knowledge of the changes George Osborne announced as part of his 2014 Budget and 63 per cent support the greater control these changes will give them over their finances.

Clive Bolton, Aviva’s managing director for retirement solutions, said: “It’s good to see that consumers support the government’s changes to retirement income and are confident about the opportunities that increased flexibility and choice will bring them.”

Despite support for the changes, running out of money is a major concern for would-be retirees, with nearly a quarter of people surveyed saying they do not feel their retirement income will last for the whole of their lifetime.

Men are much more likely than women to feel confident that their money will stretch – 41 per cent versus 27 per cent.

Meanwhile, 41 per cent said that although they have some knowledge to be able to make the right decisions about their retirement, they would benefit from further help.

Bolton said: “It’s clear that people will need support and guidance as they choose how to make the most of their savings, particularly as many are concerned about running out of money over what could be a long and varied retirement.”

 

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