Women and Retirement 2020 report: Gender pension inequalities remain

12 Nov 2020

Women saving on the average wage would need to work past 100 to match men’s pension savings.

This is according to Scottish Widows' Women and Retirement 2020 report showing that women saving a minimum of 12% of the average wage are still saving £1,300 a year less than men.

This means women will need to work an additional 37 years to equal men’s savings, reports Pensions Age.

The findings also cautioned that this number is likely to increase as the full economic hit from the coronavirus crisis is realised.

This is despite the gender pensions gap reducing to 1%, the narrowest on record, with 59% of women saving adequately compared to 60% of men.

In terms of age, just 46% of people in their 20s are saving the advised 12% of their salary, compared to 56% of men the same age.

Although this figure rises to 64% for women in their 50s, this means that younger women will miss out on compound interest advantages, which can “substantially” boost their savings.

According to Scottish Widows managing director of workplace savings, Jackie Leiper: “While we’re heartened at the record levels of saving, there’s still a mountain to climb before we reach true gender pension parity.

“Women face decades of extra working before they’ll have a pension to match that of a man’s, which is unfair and unacceptable.

“Until we can resolve structural inequalities, from the gender pay gap to the uneven division of labour at home, we will never have pension equality.”

Moreover, due to the pandemic, Scottish Widows said women are more likely to be working in shutdown sectors, with 36% of women under 25 working in these industries, and 49% of under-25s having been furloughed.

Leiper added: “In a matter of months the pandemic is reversing years of progress.

“We’re calling for urgent pension reforms that will help more women save more for retirement, including improved childcare provisions, enhanced pensions for those on maternity leave, the inclusion of pensions in divorce proceedings, and the scrapping of the auto‐enrolment minimum earnings threshold.”