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Retirement plan ‘a must’


HALLAM HOPE

Retirement plan ‘a must’

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Barbadian working women, reflective of global trends, are living longer than men but saving inadequately for retirement.

This need for women to plan their retirement was highlighted yesterday at a breakfast seminar sponsored by asset management company, Royal Fidelity Merchant Bank & Trust (Barbados) Ltd.

Fidelity’s vice-president and country manager Jillian Nunes told the Saturday Sun the savings gap between men and women, as noted by speakers, was very applicable to Barbados.

“In order to make up for that savings gap, one of the solutions would be having your own personal retirement savings account alongside of your company plan,” Nunes said.

The issue of women being paid less than men has been highlighted in the news with the BBC’s former China editor Carrie Gracie winning a battle over gender pay inequality and receiving an apology and payout from the corporation.

On average, said managing director and chief income strategist with TIAA, keynote speaker Diane Garnick, women lived longer than men, work for less and save less for their retirement. TIAA is a leading financial services company in the United States.

Some women have older spouses and spend more on health care, Garnick noted.

 “If a man saves 10 per cent for retirement a woman needs to save 18 per cent just for savings equality at retirement,” she added.

Garnick said: “People are focused on what happens right now” and fail to save adequately for their retirement in the form of pensions. Parents may find they pay for their children’s and grandchildren’s expenses but are forgotten in their old age.

Natalie Primus, Fidelity’s pensions manager, cited an example where a pensioner could find based on a final annual salary of $55 000 their pension could end up at $2 200 or half of the monthly salary received when they were working. (HH)

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