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Workers pension pots jeopardised by insufficient contributions

The UK’s workforce could be jeopardising their chances of a comfortable retirement, after research revealed that over a third of employees were reluctant to invest more than 5% of their salary into their pension pot.

According to a survey from Friends Life, 35% of workers stated they will not be investing more than this figure into their pensions, while just 13% said they would be happy to contribute more than 10% of their salaries.

A further 14% felt that saving the equivalent of 8% of their salary each month (the total level auto-enrolment will reach with combined employer and employee contributions plus tax benefits) would be enough to see them safely through retirement.

Commenting on the plight facing workers in the UK if they fail to plan adequately for their retirement, managing director of corporate benefits, Friends Life, said:

“The current economic climate is undoubtedly squeezing employees' incomes, but to prevent retirement poverty we have to motivate people to take responsibility and start saving early. The low starting rate for contributions under auto-enrolment should help in this respect.

“[But] if auto-enrolment fails to kick-start the fight against retirement poverty, the government will have to consider other options, which may include compelling people to save rather than just nudging them along.”

Further findings from the research identified the measures that would encourage people to put more away into savings.

This included tax relief (41%), better annuity rates (27%) the ability to withdraw pension monies before retirement (25%) and greater flexibility (23%). However, one in five said nothing would persuade them to increase their contributions.

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