Insights

UK Snapshot

  • People in the UK realise there is a retirement challenge and that change lies ahead
  • They also recognise that are ultimately responsibility for funding their retirement
  • The popularity of annuities may have fallen since Freedom and Choice, but people still value stable income

The concept of retirement remains constant. The reality of retirement continues to change.

Since Freedom and Choice in 2015, pension scheme members have more options than ever. But this freedom can make it more difficult for them to decide among the array of investment and income options.

In this report, we look at the expectations of UK workers and compare these with the reality of retirees — in terms of spending needs, consumption sacrifices, income preferences and sources for advice.

Here’s a preview of a few of the findings:

People in the UK realise there is a retirement challenge

The good news is that people in the UK are aware of the challenge before them, realising that the amount they’re saving will not be close enough to what they will need to fund their retirement.

 

Workers are realistic about their expected income in retirement
People know that their income will decrease in retirement and most expect their retirement income will fall by around half. This is quite accurate when you compare it with the income retirees are receiving in retirement as a ratio of the income they received in their working years.

Recognition that changes lie ahead
Importantly, most people recognise that they are ultimately responsible for their income in retirement and they are prepared to do something about it.

The sooner the better
The most common advice retirees feel they can give current savers is to start saving earlier (69%), followed by engaging with their pension earlier (65%). However, this is not what’s currently happening — only 15% of people in the working population stated that they have actually begun seeking help with their pension.

More freedom, similar choice
Although only 30% of  retirees surveyed bought an annuity, 70-80% of those in the working population and approaching retirement said they would value a solution from their employer that provided a predictable income. This shows that  although the popularity of annuities may have fallen with the introduction of Freedom and Choice, people still value stable income.

What does this mean for sponsors, schemes and the wider industry in helping members to achieve better retirement outcomes?

 To read the full report, contact ssgadefinedcontribution@ssga.com