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Professor Andrew Pendleton at the 2016 ProShare Annual Conference

Professor Andrew Pendleton, Professor of Human Resource Management at Durham University Business School, presented findings from a joint study with the Yorkshire Building Society and Leeds University Business School at the ProShare Annual Conference in London at the end of September.

Professor Pendleton co-presented (with Martin Nellist of the Yorkshire Building Society and Professor Andrew Robinson of Leeds University Business School) the results of research on the relationship between savings and employee share ownership schemes at the ProShare Annual Conference in September 2016.

The headline finding is that 13% of participants in the ‘Sharesave’ Save As You Earn share options scheme make no other regular savings at all. The results suggest that without Sharesave, these employees would be making no regular savings. Sharesave is attractive as the share scheme is trusted more than other financial products and deductions from salary provide an easy way to save. The research profiles those who save only in Sharesave – they tend to be on low incomes and have lower levels of financial literacy than other participants. 

Low levels of personal savings are a major concern in the UK. Many individuals have little or no savings, meaning they have no buffer against unexpected life ‘shocks’. Many have inadequate savings to fund a comfortable retirement.

The findings are based on a major study of Sharesave participants conducted jointly in 2015 between Durham University Business School, Leeds University Business Schools and the Yorkshire Building Society. The research examines behaviours, characteristics and the decision-making of Sharesave participants. Over 3,100 Sharesave participants responded to the survey. 

A brief report of the presentation can be found in Pay and Benefits magazine, here.

The presentation can be found here.

Sharesave is an HMRC-approved scheme that enables employees in participating companies to save for either three or five years, with the option of acquiring shares in the company at the end of the savings period (at a price, often discounted, at the start of the savings period).

ProShare is the main body promoting employee share ownership in the UK. More information can be found here.