What did Social Market Foundations’ research find?
Social Market Foundations’ recent research found that workers from minority ethnic backgrounds were disproportionately missed out.
The study was supported by Which? And found that only 25% of workers from ethnic minorities have a workplace pension. This is below the national level of 38%.
Ethnic minorities were also found to be more sceptical than others about the importance of private pension savings. They were more likely to believe that the state pension would be enough for a secure retirement.
The SMF believe the scepticism in ethnic minorities will put “greater risk of hardship in old age as the state pension and their savings may turn out to be insufficient for their needs.”
One solution from the think tank SMF is to overhaul pension auto-enrolment rules to bring more workers into the workplace pension system. Ethnic minority workers are often left out of workplace pensions due to low wages.
The SMF also called out the financial services industry for not doing enough to build ethnic minorities’ trust in pensions and savings services.
The SMF has demanded that the government needs to speed up its plans for pension enrolment to start at the age of 18.
However, the government states it is planning to make these changes, when affordable. The debate will be discussed again if teenage workers state that they will take a cut to their pay for a workplace pension. This could currently be tough with the cost-of-living crisis.