Women are struggling more than men to save for their retirement, new figures suggest.
According to the latest Scottish Widows Women & Retirement Report, 52 per cent of women are saving adequately for their retirement, compared to 60 per cent of men.
Despite these new figures remaining at record levels, the gender gap between men and women has widened since 2014, when 50 per cent of women were saving adequately compared with 55 per cent of men.
Women are also view their retirement more pessimistically than men, with 57 per cent being concerned they are not preparing adequately, compared to 41 per cent of men. Women aged 18 to 29 are the least optimistic with just 18 per cent feeling positive about their retirement. Seven out of ten divorced women also believed that they would not be able to save any more in the next year than they are now.
The report suggested that an increased education and information in retirement planning would help more women to save for their future. The study found that a third of 18 to 21 year old women would be encouraged to start saving if they had access to information on pensions or retirement planning; while two-fifths of women aged 22 to 29 said they would be encouraged if they could see the value of their pension, either online or via an app.
The report also suggested that automatic enrolment could be effective in increasing women’s pensions, particularly with young savers.
Jackie Leiper, a retirement expert from Scottish Widows said, “It is encouraging to see that over half of women are making sufficient savings towards their retirement, but a growing savings gap persists in the UK.”
“It’s vital that we address this to ensure women feel reassured about their finances and prepared for retirement, whether they are self-employed, work for a large employer, are divorced, married or single.”
“More also needs to be done to make certain that automatic enrolment does not marginalise female savers who may not qualify for the threshold.”
“And this means we need to engage innovatively with female millennial savers, who are just beginning to put money aside for their retirement.”
“Our research shows they are crying out for information, and learning good savings habits now will help ensure they are better prepared for later life.”
“Providers, employers and the government alike must also explore further initiatives to help women of all ages save in other ways if they don’t qualify for a workplace pension.”