The value of pensions has fallen by a third in the last 12 months due to the current financial crisis, according to research by a consultancy firm.

Since October last year, defined contribution pension schemes have lost £157 billion, a report by Aon Consulting says.

In October 2007, these pensions had assets worth £552 billion but this has fallen to £395 billion, which is a decrease of 28 per cent.

Aon Consulting representative Helen Dowsey said it may appear to be a double blow to employees who are currently facing a struggle to make ends meet.

"However most workers will have the fortune of time on their side as their retirement will be many years away, enough time to weather the current storm," she added

The decrease in the value of pensions is the equivalent of a £46,417 loss for each worker who pays into a scheme.

In recent news, it was revealed savers who try to withdraw with-profits bonds will lose a large percentage of their money as banks introduce charges for leaving policies early.