Consultants Aon have suggested that fewer requests regarding the state of workers’ pensions indicate a rise in confidence in retirement savings.
Requests have dropped by 17% between the first and second quarter of the year from pension scheme members, in relation to the value of their pension pot.
The number of people asking about their pension based on the current service plan they are with fell by 9% in the second quarter of the year, in comparison to the first three months of 2009. Although, numbers were still 36% greater than those for the same first quarter of 2008.
However, the head of pensions at Towers Perrin, Mark Duke, said it was a “huge leap” to indicate the figures represented a rise in pension confidence. He suggests few people check the value of their pension pot frequently, so that these were most likely marginal figures. Duke also stated that when people had checked, the downturn resulted in their pension pot looking dismal so they did not want to check again too soon.
In Aon’s sample of 350,000 members in 35 UK pension schemes, there was a 37% fall in the number of new workers joining schemes quarter-on-quarter.
Aon Consulting’s commercial director, Colin Hamilton, said: “If stock market performance is dictating confidence levels among savers, this would suggest a lack of understanding of the long-term nature of pension saving.
“Effective member communication and education has an essential role to play in explaining the long-term nature of saving for retirement and ensuring that members are well informed during periods of economic volatility so that they do not rely on equity markets to solely dictate their concerns.”