200,000 pots accessed in first three months of pension freedoms


More than 200,000 pension policies were accessed during the first three months of the freedoms, more than double normal levels, FCA figures reveal.

Of those, 71,455 entered some kind of drawdown contract, 12,418 bought an annuity and 120,588 made a full or partial cash withdrawal.

The data was collected by the FCA on 107 providers – focusing on the 15 largest firms – between April and June.

Around 100,000 pots were accessed in the same period of 2013, FCA director of policy, risk and research Chris Woolard told the Department for Work and Pensions select committee this morning.

He added the average time taken to transfer a pension pot was 16 days.

ABI figures published at the start of September revealed savers have withdrawn £2.4bn from pension pots in the first three months of the new freedoms.

The ABI found £1.3bn has been paid out in cash lump sums, with an average payment of around £15,000.

An additional £1.1bn has been paid out through 264,000 drawdown payments, with an average payment of around £4,200.