A global study by HSBC has found Britons have the worst retirement prospects with a fifth of those in their late 50s and early 60s resigned to never retiring.
One in five workers nearing the normal retirement age believe that they will never be able to afford to retire, a wide-ranging global study has found.
Twenty per cent of those aged between 55 and 64 years old – expect to have to continue working indefinitely.
HSBC’s Future of Retirement report, which questioned over 16,000 people in 15 countries revealed, also found that Britons had the worst retirement prospects of any of the countries.
It found that workers living in the UK typically expect to spend 19 years in retirement but only have enough savings to last for the first seven years, leaving them with a 12-year shortfall.
People living in the United States, in contrast, had enough cash put by to last for 14 years during their retirement – the highest expectation of any country.
It also portrayed a bleak future for many single Britons approaching retirement. The UK had the highest number of people, at 36pc, divorced or separated who were expecting to work indefinitely – almost double the global average of 20pc.
Christine Foyster, head of wealth management at HSBC, said: “Today’s workers should prepare for retirement as early as possible to have some certainty for retirement. Life is full of reasons to prioritise short term spending over longer term planning, but the sooner people start saving, the less likely they will have to rely on working in old age.”
Two fifths (39pc) of Britons asked said that they had not financially prepared adequately, or at all, for a comfortable retirement. Thirty-five per cent of those only noticed how unprepared they were after retiring.
The report also warned that the UK has the biggest inter-generational drop in the number of years that retirement savings are expected to last for.
Those surveyed in the UK who have already retired said they expect their savings to last them for 13 years on average – a figure which then almost halves to seven years among the UK’s next generation of retirees.
Several countries in the study – Brazil, India, China and Taiwan – bucked the trend seen in the UK, with younger people expecting their retirement savings to last longer than those of their parents.
The findings come at a time when the Government is rolling out landmark reforms to reverse a looming retirement savings crisis as people live for longer.
One million people have already been placed into workplace pensions as a result of automatic enrolment, which started last autumn with larger companies. Recent official figures showed that private pension saving slid to record lows just before the reforms were launched.
The survey also included Australia, Canada, Egypt, France, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Mexico, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates.
A fifth of older Britons will work till they drop