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Young savers 'oblivious' to pension changes

07 April 2017

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Young people are unaware of the significant changes to the pensions landscape, according to new research from Aviva.

The research, which comes as the pensions industry marks the anniversaries of both the new state pension and the new pension freedoms, found that millions on under-35s are "blind" to the changes.

It found, although the new state pension was introduced in April 2016, and was designed to simplify retirement provision from the state, fewer than one in five under 35s are confident they will receive money from the state when they retire.

The research also showed that two thirds of under-35s believe they will receive their state pension before age 68, despite the fact the current legislation means state pension age for those under 35 will be 68.

This equates to nine million young people expecting a state pension before they will receive it.

Half of under-35s in the research also said they knew nothing about the pension freedoms, introduced in April 2015, designed to give private pension savers more options after age 55.

Alistair McQueen, head of savings and retirement at Aviva, said the research showed that the time, effort, and money spent of modernising the pension system in recent years was still yet to reach its full potential with younger people.

He said: "As many as 14 million young savers today understandably see retirement as tomorrow's problem, but the retirement challenges facing today's under-35s are arguably greater than those faced by any recent generation.

"We need to reframe how we see this challenge and position it as a challenge for the young, not just the old."

McQueen added that the pensions industry needed to look at ways of connecting with younger people by embracing technology, such as the Pensions Dashboard.

"The pensions world is often in the stone age in its adoption of technology," he said, "we need to encourage action and make sure all concerned understand what lies ahead."

"With greater understanding, I am confident young people will be better placed to take control of their futures and will seize this responsibility."

First published 07.04.2017