Three quarters to stay in Nest overall, but huge age and regional differences – B&CE

Almost three quarters of employees intend to stay opted into the National Employment Savings Trust, but take-up varies widely according to region and take-up, according to new research.

A recent survey undertaken on behalf of B&CE, the employee benefits provider to the construction industry, shows 72 per cent of employees say they will remain enrolled in Nest, formerly personal accounts. The survey, which was taken in November, showed the numbers planning to opt out has risen 28 per cent, from a figure of 25 per cent when the same question was asked a year earlier. B&CE says this increase is not surprising given the financial difficulties people face today.
But there are huge regional variations in planned take-up, with over 35 per cent in the North and Greater London regions saying they will opt out but only 15 per cent planning to do so in the areas of Yorkshire, Humberside, the South West and Wales.
Age variations are even more pronounced, with only 10 per cent within the 18-34 age group indicating they would opt out, rising to 55+ group, 42 per cent of whom are planning to opt out. 17 per cent of 35-54 year-olds are planning to opt out,
B&CE’s research also looked at why customers might opt out. 21 per cent gave the reason of affordability; an increase on the figure of 17 per cent a year earlier.
John Jory, Director of B&CE says: “The survey results for the higher age bands are disappointing but perhaps not surprising. However, overall the results are very encouraging in that only 28 per cent intend to opt out but significantly this falls to only 10 per cent in the 18 to 34 age group. For this age group, starting to save from a young age could make a major positive impact to the income they can look forward to receiving in retirement.”