Personal Pension  

Scottish Widows urges employers to help staff value their savings

Employers need to fulfil their responsibility and help their staff understand the importance of saving as much as possible, as early as possible, a pensions specialist from Scottish Widows has said.

Lynn Graves, head of business development, corporate pensions, for the provider, said: “As we mark the second anniversary of the introduction of the auto-enrolment legislation, it is important that employers now listen to demands from their employees to fulfil their responsibility.

“They should ensure that employees have all the tools at their disposal to make the right decisions about their savings.

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“While we have clearly come on in leaps and bounds in getting people to think about their retirement, it is important that employees are made aware of the need to be saving above the minimum amount if they want to truly safeguard their finances for later life.”

Her comments came as a poll conducted among UK adults found that only 18 per cent of respondents think that making the minimum contribution of 8 per cent could give them a comfortable standard of living in retirement.

More than 33 per cent of workers believed that employers who offer a pension scheme should also offer full financial advice to help them, especially as many workers are on moderate salaries.

Adviser view

Guy Stephens, managing director of Bristol-based Rowan Dartington Signature, said: “The ‘average’ worker feels poorer due to inflation eating away at his discretionary spending power even though the two respective economies are now larger than before the credit crisis. Talk of interest rate rises still appears premature in this environment.

“What is becoming evident in the post-QE era is that all that liquidity has boosted risk asset prices such as equities, fixed interest and property without making any real difference to the real economy or the man in the street. This has produced a two-speed economy with those who hold the risk assets feeling significantly wealthier while those who rely on earnings for their spending feeling poorer.”