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Bosses back pension schemes

Over three-quarters of company senior executives want their employees to reach retirement age with adequate retirement savings, according to a CBI/Mercer pension survey.

The poll of 233 companies across the UK found that 80 per cent of all senior staff in all sizes of firms agreed they want employees to have sufficient savings for retirement. But there was a split between big and small firms about the importance of schemes, with 73 per cent of executives at big firms convinced that pension schemes help in recruitment and retention of staff compared with 65 per cent of small firms.

The CBI says the survey results have not changed significantly from its 1994 poll. The research shows that just 15 per cent of executives believe it is not the employer&#39s responsibility to finance pension provision for employees.

Overall, 26 per cent of all executives were neutral on the issue, prompting the CBI to say that despite majority backing for company pension schemes, financial support should not be taken for granted in any size of firm. Eighty per cent of all executives agreed that companies should play a role in raising employee awareness of retirement planning.

Ninety-three per cent believe their employees value the pension scheme they provide but half say that staff do not appreciate the scheme as much as they would like.

A slight majority – 51 per cent – believe employers should provide a defined-contribution scheme, with just 20 per cent arguing for defined-benefit schemes.

CBI director-general Digby Jones says: “Despite employers&#39 best efforts to increase take-up, too many employees are not taking advantage of employer contributions. Much more needs to be done to incentivise the millions who are not saving enough for their retirement.”


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