The Aegon report says that across Europe, workers in the UK today are the “least likely” to say they expect to stop work all at once and fully retire.
Only 1 in 4 UK workers plan to stop work completely, compared to half already retired who say that they stopped working all at once and entered full retirement at one time.
UK pension policy and employment laws are leading the way to gradual transition into retirement, suggesting the UK is ahead of other European countries in terms of retirement trends.
Aegon research shows that the concept of retirement is changing with more people choosing to work past traditional retirement ages, or reduce their hours gradually.
Stopping work on a set date like a 65th birthday is no longer seen as the norm, says Aegon.
Across Europe, workers in Spain (54%) and France (52%) are the most likely to still envisage taking this route, however UK workers are the least likely to stop work one day and start a life of leisure the next, with only 27% (approximately 1 in 4) favouring this option.
UK men are far more likely (32%) than women (23%) to stop work all at once.
Aegon says in the UK retirement has become an “active stage of life” with people remaining economically active. The majority of UK workers, 61%, see some form of transition to retirement where they continue working as they currently are or work part time for a while during their ‘retirement’.
The two most common reasons for workers in the UK to continue working longer are: keeping active/keeping brain alert (62%) and enjoying work (39%).
However, staying in the job market was seen as less positive for some, who saw extending their working life as a necessity. The state pension providing enough money was a specific concern for 33%, while running out of money caused anxiety for 30% of respondents.
Steven Cameron, pensions director at Aegon, said: “The UK seems to be leading the charge here compared to other countries with less than half as many planning a sudden stop compared to those in France and Spain.
“Many people are choosing to keep working and earning, perhaps by cutting back their hours gradually, even once they’ve started taking their pension. The UK government’s introduction of pension freedoms and banning employers from having a fixed retirement age has made it easier for more people in the UK to choose to work past traditional retirement ages.”
Some 14,400 workers and 1,600 retired people were surveyed by Aegon in 15 countries across the Americas, Europe, Asia and Australia between in January and February this year.
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