Warning for Women as Pensions Gender Gap is Revealed

More than half of all women feel financially unprepared for their retirement, as it is revealed that the average man has twice as much money set aside for their pension.

To mark the Fawcett Society Equal Pay Day on 10 November, Close Brothers Asset Management has released a new study which shows the true extent of the gender savings gap.

The Lifetime Savings Challenge Report 2017 found that 51 per cent of all female employees do not feel financially prepared for their retirement, compared with just 35 per cent of men who feel the same way. Only 23 per cent of female employees feel well prepared for retirement, compared to more than a third (36 per cent) of men.

According to the report, the average amount in a woman’s workplace pension scheme is just £53,000, less than half of the £120,000 which has been saved by their male colleagues. Furthermore, the Close Brothers research found that female workers are twice as likely to have less than £5,000 in workplace savings compared to their male counterparts.

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Close Brothers’ head of financial education Jeanette Makings said that these figures are a continuation of the gender pay gap. According to the Fawcett Society, women are paid an average of 14.1 per cent less than men in the UK. The Fawcett Society Equal Pay Day marks the point at which women effectively stop earning relative to men.

“Women are not only earning less and therefore saving less, but are significantly less confident about the savings options available and how to choose what’s best for them,” said Makings. “Women are more likely to trust friends and family or personal savings websites, which are unlikely to be able to provide suitable and comprehensive information across the entire savings landscape.”

The report also found that women had were significantly less confident than men about choosing the right financial products, with Makings suggesting that financial educators “consider the diverse needs of their audience, including what style and content suits the individual members of their workplace”.

Kathryn Gaw

Kathryn Gaw is a financial journalist based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She has been writing about personal finance and investment trends for more than a decade, and her work has been featured in the Financial Times, City A.M., the Press Association, and The Irish Independent, among many other publications.