Almost half of women yet to retire do not have a pension plan illustrating a disturbing lack of concern for their future welfare, according to figures revealed by Baring Asset Management.

Alarmingly, 17 per cent of over 65s who are still working do not have a retirement strategy either and will be forced to become reliant on state funding in their coming years.

Marino Valensise, chief investment officer at Barings, said: “Our findings are very worrying. With the demise of defined benefit pension plans and the fact that life expectancy is increasing, people need to save more for their retirement and start sooner.

He continued: “However, our research suggests that increasingly, retirement will be seen as a luxury for people as opposed to a right, and many more will be forced to work beyond their 65th birthday in order to maintain their standard of living.”

The North West region of the UK was the worst off with 47 per cent of people without a pension plan. Wales had the lowest figure at 27 per cent.

The figures also highlighted that 12 per cent of people yet to retire, plan on using their property as their pension, up by four per cent from the same time last year.