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DIY investors risk missing out on up to £247,000 by switching from their workplace pension scheme’s default investment strategy and making their own fund choices instead, according to new research from The People’s Pension1 and State Street Global Advisors2.
Largely due to the success of auto-enrolment and its more than 10 million new savers, billions of pounds are saved into individual UK workplace pension pots each year. The vast majority are invested into well-managed and cost-effective default funds and exposed to a wide range of investment types and markets in order to manage the risk for savers.
The new report, Workplace Defaults: Better Member Outcomes3, has revealed the potential cost of four of the most common mistakes made by pension savers who choose to be their own investment manager rather than investing in a default fund.
It shows how different savers, who display particular behavioural biases, perform over 33 years, compared to someone who stays invested in a well-run default fund throughout and amasses a pot of nearly £430,0003:
The report also focuses on the lack of knowledge around charges paid on pension accounts, with almost eight in 10 (78 per cent) savers unaware that a fee is taken from their pot.4 The research shows that, on average, ‘retail’ pensions carry a charge of one per cent, compared with a workplace average of 0.5 per cent.N
Nico Aspinall, Chief Investment Officer at The People’s Pension, said:
“Most people enrolled into a workplace pension stay invested in a default fund which, as this study confirms, is by far the simplest path to take to achieving good returns. There will undoubtedly be some who will want to take investment decisions and try to quickly make up the losses from this year’s fall in markets but this research shows that DIY investment is fraught with dangers.
“Members in the default fund typically face lower charges and every investment decision is made with their best interests at heart to help improve their retirement outcomes.” A
Alistair Byrne, head of pensions and retirement strategy at State Street Global Advisors, further noted: “Investment decisions are complex and most busy pension savers can’t give them the time and attention they deserve. Investing in the default strategy means putting your future finances into well-governed and efficiently scaled products managed by experienced professionals.”
Notes to editors:
For further details or to request an interview please contact Blaise Tapp, media relations manager at The People’s Pension, on 01293 205336 or firstname.lastname@example.org.