UK: Are the pension freedoms sparking an upturn in early retirement among men?

Employment figures released today* show that men aged 16-to-64 who define themselves as “retired” have bucked the trend of recent years.

An increase of 70,000 over the past year reverses the downward trend that followed the all-time high of 508,000 seen back in summer 2011. 

Meanwhile, the number of women aged 60-to-64 who define themselves as “retired” has fallen by 342,000 over the same period, primarily driven by the increase in their state pension age. 

This data comes on the same day the FCA published its interim report into the UK’s retirement market.1

Commenting on today’s data, Alistair McQueen, Head of Savings & Retirement at Aviva said:

“This reversal of the trend amongst men comes as the UK looks to encourage longer working lives to reflect our ever-increasing life expectancy and meet the changing needs of the UK economy. 

“It is too soon to conclude what is driving this new trend, but the ability to access pension savings from age 55 may be a contributing factor. 

“Aviva is a supporter of the pension freedoms. We believe savers should be trusted with their own money. However, it is critical that those who choose to access the freedoms are helped to do so with care and consideration. They need access to free, easy-to-access services and guidance that can help them to make the right choices. We will continue work with the FCA, and other parties, to ensure the retirement market continues to meet the needs and interests of all savers.” 

ENDS

Sources:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/uklabourmarket/july2017#economic-inactivity

1 https://www.fca.org.uk/publication/market-studies/retirement-outcomes-review-interim-report.pdf

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