Rise in number of workers delaying retirement due to pandemic

The number of workers delaying retirement due to the impact of the pandemic has increased to 29%, according to new research published by Fidelity International.

This is a rise from 23% of workers who had made changes to their retirement plans as a result of COVID-19 when Fidelity conducted the same research in October 2020.

Fidelity also reported that the increase to 29% of all workers in August this year includes 33% of all over-55s.

The research, based on a survey sample of 2,000 UK adults, revealed that just over one in five (21%) workers are intending to “phase into” retirement instead of stopping work on a set date. The biggest motive behind this is that three in 10 (30%) workers want to save more after reassessing their pensions during the pandemic.

Furthermore, the research found that people are also choosing to pause their retirement plans to save more money in case long-term care is needed in the future (27%). Other reasons included needing to support adult children or other family members financially (23%), as well as recovering retirement savings lost due to COVID-19 (18%).

Fidelity investment director, Maike Currie, commented: “For many, the effects of the pandemic are far from over. Despite government interventions such as furlough and business support schemes helping to prop up households financially, people are still concerned over a future that has become increasingly blurry following the events of the past two years.

“Many are choosing to put more safety measures in place, whether by re-evaluating their pensions, working longer, or changing their expectations for retirement. In essence, workers are battening down the hatches to protect themselves against what may come next.”

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