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UK’s ‘ostrich generation’ is failing to plan for retirement


A new report suggests that only 39% of Britons have a financial plan to save for their retirement, even though a majority expect work pensions to become less generous.


The HSBC survey, which quizzed 17,000 people in 17 countries, found that virtually half of those asked in the UK thought they would be worse off in their old age than their parents (compared to just 27% who thought they would be better off). 68% of respondents are worried about coping financially and 48% fear they are not saving enough for their retirement, rising to 57% among women in their 30s and 40s.


Despite this, nearly one in five UK respondents said they didn’t know what their main source of retirement income would be, with a further 21% saying they will rely on the state pension.


The National Association of Pension Funds said: ‘We must begin to think differently about the way we approach financial planning for retirement. The report suggests that Britons currently have a culture of dependency on the state, which is a false economy. People have to take greater personal responsibility for their retirement and rely less on the state, by planning more effectively and saving more for themselves.’


The 39% of Britons who claimed they did have a financial plan for retirement compares with 84% of people in Malaysia.


‘The emergence of this ostrich generation is a real concern. Britons know that they need to plan and save more for their retirement, yet they are not turning this knowledge into action,’ said David Wells, head of investments, pensions and savings at HSBC.