Women’s retirement income hit as gender gap grows

According to new research from Prudential, women who plan to retire this year face a retirement income gender gap of almost 30%.

The life insurance and pensions provider’s Class of 2016 study found that women who want to retire in 2016 can expect the highest level of income since the study began. However, it also revealed that the gender gap had increased to £5,400.

On average, the study showed that women can expect to retire on £14,450 a year; up £150 compared with 2015 figures. However, the gender gap appeared to have increased by £600 during that time.

Women can expect to receive a retirement income that is 27% lower than men, according to the research. The average male who retires this year will take home £19,850 a year.

Prudential’s retirement income expert, Kirsty Anderson, said: “The big increases we saw in women’s expected retirement incomes, as people looked forward last year to the new pension freedoms and the changes to the state pension, have been tempered somewhat in 2016.

“It is possible that many women retirees were expecting to receive the new ‘flat rate’ state pension in full, but having received their illustrations have had to revise their retirement expectations downwards.”

She added: “We have also seen a fall in women’s confidence that they’ll be able to enjoy a comfortable retirement this year.

“For most people still in work, the best way to secure the highest possible quality of life in retirement is to save as much as possible into a pension as early as possible and to take professional financial advice before making big financial decisions.”