Most ethnic minority groups in UK save less into pensions: Study

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London, April 1

People from Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Indian ethnic backgrounds were more likely to rely financially on support networks, such as friends and family, in retirement, than white British people, according to a new research.

Findings from Phoenix Insights' latest report show that pension participation among ethnic minorities is lower than average, and non-pension sources are expected to play an important role in funding the retirement of ethnic minorities.

The percentage of people from these groups expecting a "comfortable" retirement is also greater -- 37 per cent of people from India and Pakistan and 36 per cent from Bangladesh, compared to 25 per cent among white British people.

However, these expectations do not reflect the present reality in which weekly income for retired Asian and black families are 391 and 412 pounds, respectively, compared to the population average of 556 pounds.

Most ethnic minority groups expect an income between 3,000-7,000 pounds a year higher than the UK average and aim to retire up to two years earlier, the research said.

Compared to the average retirement income of 25,000 pounds expected by white British people, most ethnic minority groups expect to have a retirement income around 16 per cent higher if they were of a similar age and had similar salaries, the research said.

While non-pension sources can contribute to overall retirement income, the amount of money an individual has saved in a pension is the main contributor to a good standard of living in retirement.

With retirement income typically determined by the number of years a person has saved for and how many years of retirement need to be financed, the finding that individuals from ethnic minority groups also aim to retire up to two years earlier suggests additional limitations on the size of the savings pot these groups will be entering retirement with.

"Across the UK, we know that there are up to 18 million people who are under-saving for retirement. Tackling this problem should be an urgent priority for government, employers, and individuals alike, as the nation is living longer than ever before," said Catherine Foot, director of Phoenix Insights.

"Our findings are clear that ethnic minority groups do indeed have different expectations and levels of preparation for retirement, whilst at the same time demonstrating the need to better understand how providers and government can support these groups so they can enjoy a good quality retirement that meets their financial needs."

--IANS

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