05 February 2017
‘£9bn cashed in’ since pension freedoms launch
Over £9 billion in retirement savings has been cashed in since pension freedoms were launched, new data shows.
Figures from HM Revenue and Customs show more than 1.5 million payments have been made since the Government gave access to pension pots for people aged 55 and over.
In the last three months alone, £1.56 billion has been cashed in by 162,000 savers, rising from the previous quarter's figures of £1.54 billion and 158,000.
The freedoms are aimed at offering more flexibility over pension savings, with the first 25% being tax-free.
In recent months there has been growing criticism over the freedoms though, as scams to target the over-55s have become more common with fraudsters taking advantage of their access to pension pots.
According to the Government, Pension Wise, a free service set up to give guidance on pension freedoms, has dealt with more than 100,000 appointments and had more than 3.7 million visits to the website.
Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Kirby, said: "We are working with our partners, including Pension Wise, the regulators and pension firms, so that savers have the support they need to understand the options available to them."