Easy Access Pensions Will Aid Phased Retirement

Over 55s are more likely to slowly fade into retirement than suddenly give up work when they reach a specific age, according to new research.

Financial firm Aegon spoke to 16,000 workers in 15 countries to come up with a detailed picture of their retirement plans.

In Britain, the government’s flexible pension changes will ease the way for thousands of people to phase in their retirement.

However, the research revealed only 12% of workers has a formal retirement plan – while 40% have no plans at all.

In Britain, the results showed that 36% of older workers will stay in their jobs part time or on temporary contracts, while 14% more hope to find work to supplement their pensions.

Positive feelings about retirement

That adds up to half of over 55s who would normally retire on a specific date staying at work in some capacity instead.

Over 55s in other countries intend to give up work on their retirement day – 51% of French workers admitted that would just stop, along with 52% in Spain, 36% in Sweden and 33% in the Netherlands.

The study also showed people consider retirement as a positive part of their life, saying they were looking forward to more leisure time, more time with their families and more time to relax and travel.

David Macmillan, managing director at Aegon UK said: “Everyone’s likely to live longer than the previous generation, maybe for 20 or 30 years after their retirement age, so it’s no surprise they want to have an active working life for longer as well because they are fitter and healthier due to medical advances.

Flexible pension payments

“Many British workers are grasping the opportunity of the government’s new flexible pension payments to phase in retirement to give themselves more of a financial cushion for a comfortable retirement.”

Macmillan explained that one of the measures that will help boost retirement incomes is a new rule allowing £10,000 of pension contributions a year even after drawing down some money.

“Many workers told us they will stay in work and top up their pensions under these rules to take away some of their financial stress,” he said.

“Many will take pension cash to make up their part time earnings, but many will still have cash they can save and putting it back into a pension is seen as an opportunity to make life easier in their later years.”

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