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British women form pensions 'underclass'

24 May 2007
Women in the UK are lagging far behind their male counterparts in pensions provision, making them a 'pensions underclass', a study from Prudential has claimed.

Six in ten women do not contribute to a pension at all while 51 per cent think their retirement income will require them to modify their standard of living.

Those women who do manage to save are putting away 22 per cent less than men, at just £237 per month compared to men's £305.

While nine in ten men can also supplement their retirement income with additional means such as property assets, equity release, or investments, 20 per cent of women have no other means of boosting their pension.

"Women are the underclass when it comes to pensions," commented Gary Shaughnessy, managing director of Prudential retail life and pensions.

"With more people choosing to live alone and the number of divorces at high levels … individuals cannot rely on partners for their retirement finances," he added.

Nevertheless, the government's personal pensions saving scheme White Paper this February laid out provisions to improve pensions contributions for women working as carers or in flexible or part-time jobs.

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