26 May 2021
Research from Legal & General Retail Retirement has found that 25% of women over 50 have less than £5,000 in their pot, compared to just 15% of men. On average women over 50 have about half as much in their pension pot when compared with men (£82,311 vs. £43,014)1.
The most recently available data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS)2, indicates that men below State Pension age are more likely to have active private pensions than equivalent women (56%, compared with 51%). This significant difference in finances has left women more likely to be unsure about their ability to fund their retirement; 56% of women do not feel like they will have enough to fund their desired personal income in retirement compared to just 43% of men. This is despite the fact that on average, women expect a 15% smaller income than men once they retire. Women are also less likely to be aware of the current value of their pensions (34% vs 27% of men).
Outside of pension wealth, men on average have a higher level of cash savings, which also contributes to overarching financial security. On average, men over 50 have £40,167 in savings compared to just £29,327 for women.
According to ONS data, occupational defined benefit pensions are the only pension type where women have higher participation than men (28% vs. 25% of men). Data indicates that this is likely to be linked to the fact that the majority of occupational defined benefit pensions are public sector pensions and in 2017, the most recently available data, women made up just over two-thirds of public sector employees in the UK.
If you are concerned about the size of your pot as you approach retirement, there are a few things you can consider:
The information contained in this press release is intended solely for journalists and should not be relied upon by private investors or any other persons to make financial decisions.
Andrew Kail, CEO, Legal & General Retail Retirement: "Our data demonstrates a significant difference between the pension wealth of men and women and raises further concerns about women’s finances at the point they reach retirement. We know there are a multitude of factors that influence these figures, from the gender pay gap to the increased likelihood of women working part-time or taking career breaks when compared to their male colleagues. We also know that the pandemic has likely increased this disparity due to the unpaid caring responsibilities that typically fall to women.
We need to do more to address this financial inequality but also to address the root causes that influence it, specifically the significant burdens our society places on women outside of their careers."
Notes to editors
Established in 1836, Legal & General is one of the UK's leading financial services groups and a major global investor, with over £1.4 trillion in total assets under management* of which a third is international. We also provide powerful asset origination capabilities. Together, these underpin our leading retirement and protection solutions: we are a leading international player in pension risk transfer, in UK and US life insurance, and in UK workplace pensions and retirement income. Through inclusive capitalism, we aim to build a better society by investing in long-term assets that benefit everyone.
*at 31 Dec 2021
Legal & General Retail Retirement’s mission is to help its customers lead longer, healthier, happier lives. We believe everyone should be able to have a ‘more colourful retirement’. The Division comprises the Group’s retirement savings and income, later life lending and care solutions businesses. In 2020, LGRR wrote £910 million of annuity premiums and issued £791 million of lifetime and retirement interest only mortgages.
(As of June 2021)