Report: Understanding the Gender Pensions Gap


This Pensions Policy Institute (PPI) report, sponsored by NPW: Pensions, focuses on the pension savings gap between men and women and the major contributing factors to these differences. It analyses the reasons why such factors cause differences in the amount contributed into a pension and also explores the impact a range of potential policies have on bridging the gap.

Key findings

  • Women taking time away from work, generally to look after family, is the biggest factor in the women’s pension gap.
  • Women on average currently earn 18% less compared with their male counterparts. Over the course of a working life, the pay differential could contribute to a reduction of pension wealth of 28% of those approaching retirement.
  • A higher proportion of women are in current workplace defined benefit schemes. This is due to a larger proportion of females working in the public sector.

The report also sets out policy recommendations to reduce the gender pensions gap. Suggestions include a policy targeted at people not in paid work such as a family carer top-up so that those taking time out of work don’t miss out on contributions and saving into a pension from the first pound rather than using banded earnings.