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Over 60s missing out on £1bn of retirement savings

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Older savers are throwing away £1.75bn in pension savings by choosing not to contribute to a workplace pension, research reveals.

Royal London looked at its own customer data and found automatic enrolment opt out rates remain below 10 per cent across all age groups but rise significantly to 23 per cent for the over-60s.

Analysis by the insurer found that someone aged 60 on the average wage who was auto-enrolled into a pension scheme and made the minimum 8 per cent contribution would have a retirement pot of just under £14,000 by the time they reach age 65.

As pension contributions are made up of both employer and employee contributions as well as tax relief from the government, a saver would only need to contribute just over £6,600 of their own money to achieve this outcome.

This means that by opting out of their pension each person could be missing out on up to £7,000 each.

According to Labour Force Survey data there are approximately 1.1m people aged 60 or over who are in full time employment which means more than 250,000 people could be affected.

If each of these stands to lose up to £7,000 then collectively this group could be missing out on as much as £1.75bn in retirement savings by opting out.

Helen Morrissey, pension specialist at Royal London, said: “It is understandable that someone at the age of 60 might think it is too late to save enough to make a difference to their retirement income but they are wrong.

“Our figures show older workers are throwing away thousands of pounds of retirement income by opting out of their scheme. We would urge anyone thinking of opting out of their auto-enrolment scheme to think twice before doing so.”

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