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12 Mar 2013

Number Of Part-Time Working Women Surges Threefold Since 1987

The latest General Lifestyle Survey of the Office of National Statistics (ONS) showed that about one in four women in Britain occupying a part-time job are currently saving into a workplace pension scheme. This is 11% more than the level recorded 25 years ago, figures showed.

Women working part-time are the sole group to show a material increase in workplace pension saving membership since 1987, according to the report. The number of men working full time has declined in the last 25 years, while membership levels amongst women in full-time jobs have stayed broadly unchanged.

The rise in the proportion of women who are members of their current employer´s occupational pension scheme could be partly attributed to changes resulting from a European Court of Justice ruling made in 1997, which prevented the barring of part-time workers from pension schemes, branding it as illegal.

Pension scheme membership levels are different in the various social-economic groups, ONS said. About 66% of women working part-time in a managerial or professional setting are occupational pension scheme members. Another 54% of them fall into the intermediate group and 25% have routine or manual jobs.

The report also revealed that women, both working full-time and part-time, are more likely to be members of a pension scheme of their employer than their male counterparts, a trend which has continued since 1998 and is different from the developments seen previously.

In February, ONS reported a decline in overall pension membership levels for 2012, saying that just 46% of UK employees were saving into a workplace pension, the lowest level seen over the past 15 years.

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