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Brits Need 'Control Of Financial Affairs'

Oct 9, 2007
Small businesses are increasingly concerned about their employees' financial future, it has been suggested.

In research carried out by Barclays Financial Planning, 51 per cent of employers at small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are worried that staff are not putting enough money into pension accounts. Meanwhile, with 19 per cent of employees at such companies reported not to be making any contribution into pension schemes, a wide number of Britons could develop financial difficulties in later life as they struggle to service demands on their money such as loans, utility bills and credit cards.

Stephen Ingledew, commercial director for Barclays Financial Planning, said: "The research indicates despite the pension gap being on everyone's radar, it is some way off being plugged. The fact that half of SMEs are taking steps to encourage their staff to do more is promising, but with two-fifths of employees preferring a higher pay packet to a better pension deal, there is a danger pension provision could be overlooked in favour of more disposable income in the short-term."

Research from the financial services firm also showed that just under half (48 per cent) of SMEs give their employees access to professional financial advice - which could include areas such as creating a budget or applying for a loan. Meanwhile, 36 per cent of firms update their workers when it comes to changes to their pension scheme.

Pointing to findings from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) revealing that 56 per cent of Britons currently of working age expect that their retirement will last for at least 20 years, Mr Ingledew stated that "it is clear more has to be done to encourage people to take control of their financial affairs and plan for the future". As a result, he reported that it is "essential" that consumers take sufficient moves to make sure "their financial ideal matches reality".

Research from the ONS also showed that over half of those on defined contribution occupational pension schemes have invested less than four per cent of their salary for use upon retirement. Meanwhile, just over a third (37 per cent) of SMEs have less than a quarter of its employees registered to their company pension scheme. In addition, 29 per cent of employers were shown to be putting more than six per cent of their salary into a pension on behalf of their staff.

For those worried they are not in a position to put a sufficient amount of money away for retirement, a debt consolidation loan could well be an advisable option as a means of getting on their financial feet. In research carried out by moneysupermarket, 12.7 million Britons have taken out a personal loan so as to merge their debts into a single repayment, which in turn allows them to free up money which that go towards increasing savings. However, Tim Moss, head of loans and debt for the price comparison website, warned people to make use of the loans they take out carefully, as two-thirds of such debt consolidation consumers are set to borrow money in the future.
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Tom Dawson writes for Essentially Home Loans. Our visitors can apply for secured loans online, for whatever reason with whatever credit history. Visit us today for the best rate loans available.
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