The professional body said action being taken to equip and empower women to improve their financial futures includes:
• Lobbying the Government for changes to auto-enrolment, pension freedoms and sharing rules to make sure the gender pay gap, motherhood, caring and relationship breakdowns do not create impoverished female pensioners in the future.
• Commitments by insurers to offer flexible working and to develop inclusive practices for all consumers in a move to improve women’s financial futures.
The Insuring Women’s Futures initiative brought together 150 financial services professionals yesterday to collate data and form a plan of how to improve female financial resilience.
The CII says the initiative “has explored the financial decisions women of all ages are having to make and the way they are currently penalised when it comes to the pound in their pockets compared to their male counterparts”.
At an event at the BFI Imax in Waterloo, Insuring Women’s Futures detailed what further work – such as employers being required to disclose gender pension contribution ‘gaps’ to inform improvements to pension scheme design – needs to take place to improve women’s financial resilience.
Other recommendations outlined by the Insuring Women’s Futures initiative were:
• Equipping young women to make financially informed study choices.
• Including the employer’s pension contribution in gender pay gap reporting.
• Setting out a strategic priority for financial guidance bodies to promote gender inclusive financial engagement and wellbeing approaches.
• Creating a national conversation around care including carers’ pensions.
• Collecting and using gender disaggregated data to inform policy and supervision.
• Use of the themes of Insuring Women’s Future’s Financial Wellbeing Guide by guidance providers.
Jane Portas, author of the report and co-founder of Insuring Women’s Futures, said: “By focusing on key moments that matter interventions across the female financial Life journey, together we have the power to make practical, meaningful and lasting change.
“These cross-cutting recommendations present an opportunity for each and every one of us to act in the Moment that Matters and by doing so we will all benefit from change.”
Sian Fisher, chair of Insuring Women’s Futures and CEO of the CII, said: “We know some of the issues needing to be addressed are deep-rooted and will take time to have full effect.
“We need to empower people to come together to talk about their financial life.”
Claudio Gienal, chief executive of AXA UK and Ireland, said: “This report is the first step to securing financial resilience for future generations.”
Keith Richards, chief executive of the Personal Finance Society (PFS), said: “The Personal Finance Society has pledged to engage policymakers on the change required and recommendations stemming from the latest IWF work, in particular regarding the retirement provision deficiencies.
“It is time to better engage everyone in how to take charge of their financial future.”