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Pension freedoms boom


Looking beneath the headline figures it is also important to note that there has been no unrestrained dash for cash. The average amount withdrawn by individuals hit a record low of c£15,000 in 2018/19, suggesting little evidence of savers rushing to blow their savings on Lamborghinis.

The latest pension freedom figures1 report that the freedoms have enjoyed a record year of activity.

Tax year 2018/19 saw a record number of individuals (539,000), taking a record number of payments (2.44 million payments), withdrawing a record amount of money (£8.18 billion).

The total value of flexible payments since the freedoms were introduced in April 2015 now exceeds £25 billion, across more than 1.1 million individuals.

Commenting, Alistair McQueen, Head of Savings & Retirement at Aviva said:

“The pension freedoms are a pensions good news story. Savers love the freedoms, and their popularity continues to grow. 164,000 more people took advantage of the freedoms in 2018/19 (539,000) than in 2017/18 (375,000) – a growth of 44%.


Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.


  • Aviva provides life insurance, general insurance, health insurance and asset management to 33 million customers.
  • In the UK we are the leading insurer serving one in every four households and have strong businesses in selected markets in Europe, Asia and Canada. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE100 index.  
  • Aviva’s asset management business, Aviva Investors, provides asset management services to both Aviva and external clients, and currently manages over £331 billion in assets (as at 31 December 2018). Total group assets under management at the Aviva group are £470 billion (as at 31 December 2018).
  • Aviva helps people save for the future and manage the risks of everyday life; in 2017, we paid out 98% of all our claims across all our markets and insurance products. We paid £34.6 billion in benefits and claims in 2017.
  • By serving our customers well, we are building a business which is strong and sustainable, which our people are proud to work for, and which makes a positive contribution to society.

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