A total of 40% of pensioner couples had a private pension income below £1,000 from 2005 to 2006, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
The figures show 61% of single female pensioners and 55% of single male pensioners had a private pension income of less than £1,000.
Mike Jones, director of pension education website MyCompanyPension.co.uk, says: “This is a sad indictment of our ‘live for today, don’t worry about tomorrow’ society, led by successive Governments that have failed miserably in their tutorship of pension education and retirement guidance to the wider public.
“In the short-term the low income level for pensioners is likely to be repeated, as contributions to pension arrangements are being reduced because of the credit crunch.”
The comments follow research by portfolio manager Brewin Dolphin last month that showed one in 10 pension savers expects to stop, pause or reduce pension contributions during the next year because of the worsening economic outlook.
Jones says: “There is also a general malaise over pension provision caused by headlines about pension deficits and poor stock market returns. Over the long-term, the conclusion of the Thoresen Review was that money guidance would benefit the nation and the economy, but it does little to help those reaching retirement now.”
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