Retirement incomes are at a five year low says Prudential

UK insurance giant Prudential have revealed that those retiring in 2012 can expect to live on an annual income of £15,500, which is £1000 less, or 6% lower, than those who started their retirement in 2011. These figures come courtesy of Prudential’s Unique Class of 2012 research, which provides a financial insight into the financial expectations of Brits who are planning to retire within the next 12 months.

The results of this annual survey, which Prudential first carried out in 2008, show that the expected annual incomes for the retired have dropped by over 16% in the last 5 years. The retirees in the Class of 2008 could look forward to a total annual income, which included state, private and company pensions, of around £18,6000. That is £3100 a year more than those retiring this year will have.

In a sign of the on-going financial challenges facing those due to retire in 2012, one in five will get by on an expected annual income of less than £10,000. Meanwhile, around the country there is a regional disparity of more than £5,000 in expected retirement income. Londoners have the highest average expected incomes of £17,900, while those in Yorkshire and Humberside have the lowest at £12,800.

Fewer than two in five (37 per cent) of the Class of 2012 say that they have saved enough to secure a comfortable retirement.

Men are more optimistic about their retirement than women, with 45 per cent of men confident they will be financially comfortable compared with 31 per cent of women. However, nearly one in five (18 per cent) of those planning to retire in 2012 have no idea of the level of income they will need in order to live comfortably.

Vince Smith-Hughes, Prudential’s retirement income expert, said: “The current economic climate has created the perfect storm for people in the run up to retirement. The impact of the credit crunch, banking crisis, recession, and concerns over the Eurozone, has been reflected in the fact that expected retirement income levels have hit a five-year-low.”

“It is concerning that expected retirement incomes are going down, while pensioner expenditure is going up. However, there are some practical steps that workers and imminent retirees can take to ensure a more comfortable retirement. For those who are still working, it has never been a more important time to save into a pension. The longer that savings are invested in a retirement pot, the greater the opportunity they will have to grow.”

“However, even those due to retire this year could make their retirement funds generate better incomes. Consulting a professional financial adviser can help savers to make more informed pension saving and retirement income decisions.”

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