News items from the press relevant to the 50+
Katherine Whitehorn writes in the Guardian, 5th May 2013
As long ago as 2004, the Pensions ommission identified that female pensioners in the UK are "significantly poorer'' than men. More recently, in February this year, pensions minister Steve Webb said that women get "rotten pensions'' compared with men and will do so for "some years'' to come.
There are a number of reasons for this but one is undoubtedly the disparity in earnings between men and women. Private pensions – whether defined benefit or defined contribution – are based on income. It follows that a woman who fails to progress to the senior position that she deserves, will feel the effects of that discrimination not only during her working life but also during her retirement.
Caroline Saunders, The Guardian, 1st May 2013
The International Consortium of British Pensioners, (ICBP) is organising a debate across industry and government to find an affordable solution to unfreezing all state pensions of Britons abroad ahead of the new Single Tiered State Pension Bill.
The group, which represents half a million pensioners around the world, is campaigning to remove Clause 20 from the Bill which is set to be introduced to Parliament following scrutiny by the DWP Select Committee. Clause 20, entitled “Prisoners and Overseas Pensions”, states that frozen pension policy will remain in place.
Olivia Rzadkiewicz, The Telegraph, 1st May 2013
Ed Hawkins left listeners of Radio 4’s Today programme seething with envy this week.
While millions struggled to swallow their cornflakes, along with the notion of another challenging commute, this “retired” 33 year-old bragged of how he was living the dream in the south of France.
Andrew Oxlade The Telegraph, 30th April 2013
Overall, the proportion of British adults with a social networking profile grew to 64 per cent in 2012, compared to 59 per cent a year earlier.
Ofcom said baby boomers were responsible for the rise. The proportion of 55 to 64-year-olds with a profile rose to 35 per cent last year, up from 24 per cent in 2011.
No other age group showed a statistically significant increase over the period. Social networking participation is almost ubiquitous among young adults; 92 per cent of 16 to 24-year-olds have a profile.
Christopher Williams, The Telegraph, 23rd april 2013
Older drivers have reduced their average annual mileage by a fifth since the credit crunch started, with the average over 50 now driving around 5,389 miles a year, down from 6,561, seven years ago, research by Saga Car Insurance found.
The over 50s are doing a number of things to reduce the cost of running a car including: looking for the cheapest places to fill up (47%), leaving the car and walking more often (36%) and using public transport (35%).
Joanna Faith,Yourmoney.com, 22nd April 2013
Twenty million kilos of Cathedral City cheddar will now back up pension funds of workers at Dairy Crest, one of the UK's biggest cheesemakers.
Some 20,000 pallets of the cheese, nearly half the company's total stock, have been pledged to the pension fund trustees.
The cheese is made in Cornwall, but matured in a warehouse in Warwickshire.
It is kept on the shelves there for 12 months.
In the event of the pension fund running into financial trouble, the trustees will now be able to sell blocks of cheddar to make up the shortfall.
BBC News, 19th April 2013
'Parensioners' - men and women having children in their 40s, 50s, 60s and beyond, and who will be at retirement age while they are still financially supporting their offspring - join a string of celebrities such as Elton John and Halle Berry who have put off starting a family.
In the 20 years between 1992 and 2012, the number of people having children after the age of 40 (45 for men) has risen by 298% for women and 149% for men.
Yourmoney.com, 10th April 2013
Steve Connor in The Independent, 9th April 2013
One in 20 men over 50 now counts as part of a new class of the “unretired” who tried retirement but decided it was not for them and simply went back to work.
The figure, which does not include those who put off retirement indefinitely, is predicted to grow sharply following the abolition of the compulsory retirement age.
Major advances in life expectancy and growing numbers of people with high levels of education reaching what would once have been the end of their careers could also fuel a surge in people choosing to go back into the workplace.
John Bingham reports for The Telegraph, 8th April 2013
Boredom in retirement is sending men back to work, a study has suggested.
Financial troubles and missing the workplace may also lie behind a rise in people becoming ‘unretired’.
One in 20 men aged between 50 and 74 has decided to go back to work, according to research presented to the Royal Economic Society’s conference in London.
Rosie Taylor writes in The Daily Mail, 5th April 2013
Women who retire this year will typically be forced to survive on an annual income which is a third lower than the average man’s income, a shocking report warns today.
It highlights the nightmare facing a generation of women who are going to suffer a penny-pinching, rather than comfortable, retirement despite a lifetime of hard work.
More than 8,500 adults, including 1,000 who will retire this year, were asked how much money they expect to get when they stop work.
While a man expects to get an average of £18,250 a year, the average woman expects to get just £11,750.
Becky Barrow writes in The Daily Mail, 27th March 2013
It may seem bizarre to say so, but in some respects, medieval society was rather more civilised than our own. They hated waste in those days; objects were patched up or redeployed, very little was thrown away. And the same applied to people. Virtually no one, however aged or infirm, was without some role. Everyone contributed.
David Randall writes in The Independent, 16th March 2013
The week The Daily Telegraph investigates how other nations deal with the problem of converting pension savings into a regular income, and how their approaches compare with the British system.
While annuities attract a lot of criticism – this newspaper disclosed last week that some annuity companies make profit margins of about 20pc, and others are thought to make even more – they offer the only means of guaranteeing a specified income for life. Other means of providing a retirement income offer more flexibility and the chance of a higher income, but there is always the risk that you run out of money before you die.
Richard Evans reports in the Telegraph, 17th March 2013
Far from being 'over the hill' today's 50-something women say they feel better with age.
Sex, wellbeing and relationships have all improved for many women after they reached their half century, according to new research.
Playtex quizzed 1,500 British women aged 20 to 65 and found those 50-plus were more happy, vivacious and adventurous than ever before.
Lucy Waterlow reports in The Daily Mail, 14th March 2013
With rising state pension age, we have all been warned we will be working longer in the future.
But that doesn’t bother Albert Billington, who is happy being one of Britain’s oldest workers.
At 90 years old he shows he is still a very handy man to have around - working at DIY store B&Q.
Jaya Narain reports in the Daily Mail, 14th March 2013
Anna (not her real name) lives an enviable life in many ways. She works out at least four times a week, and with her long blonde hair and thoughtfully applied make-up, she could easily pass for 10 years younger than her actual age of 58. Since taking early retirement from her management job she has enjoyed frequent jaunts abroad and though she recently ended a relationship with a younger partner, she hopes to have a new lover one day.
But if that makes her sound like she is living a sort of mid-life dream, think again. Anna is HIV positive.
Joanna Moorhead reports in The Guardian, 12th March 2013
Unemployed people in their 50s are finding their desperate hunt for a job ‘made worse’ by a key Government rule change, a damning report warned yesterday.
Before the change, a boss could ask a worker to leave from the age of 65, known as the ‘default retirement age’, as long as they had been given six months’ notice.
Since October 2011, no worker can be asked to leave simply because they have reached the traditional retirement age of 65, which means they can stay into their 70s, 80s and beyond.
Becky Barrow reports in Daily Mail, 11th March 2013
But the Government stressed that 85 per cent of these women, born between April 6 1952 and July 5 1953, would still receive more in state pension, by up to £20,000, as they will retire earlier than men. Tens of thousands of women, though, are expected to be worse off. Ministers are bringing in sweeping changes with a new “flat rate” pension of about £144 a week from 2017.
Nicholas Cecil writes in the Evening Standard, 11th March 2013
Millions of baby boomers are approaching retirement wishing they had been more money savvy when they were younger.
Showing it is not just younger adults who should worry about retirement income, one in five over 55s have told a Standard Life survey that not saving for retirement earlier is their 'biggest money regret'.
This amount rises even higher among adults of all ages who are saving into a personal pension rather than being part of a workplace scheme, with a quarter wishing they had started saving earlier.Adam Uren writes in This is Money, 8th March 2013
Sarah O'Grady in The Express, 11th March 2013
More than 300,000 people who are aged 70 and above have a job, with many blaming the fact they are too poor to stop working, official figures revealed yesterday.
The ballooning number of older workers highlights a social revolution in Britain with people forced to work at an age when many assume they would have stopped years ago.
The figures, compiled exclusively for the Daily Mail by the Office for National Statistics, shows 193,000 men and 111,000 women are still working at the age of 70 and over.
The National Pensioners’ Convention warns the majority are ‘ordinary, working-class people who are having to take jobs because they can’t make ends meet any other way.’Becky Barrow reports in The Daily Mail, 28th February 2013
Beecham House is a rather grand retirement home in the heart of the English countryside. Every year, the residents – all gifted singers and musicians, including a retired operatic quartet – put on a concert to mark Giuseppe Verdi’s birthday. Sounds beautiful, doesn’t it?
Unfortunately, Beecham House doesn’t really exist. It’s the setting of this winter’s hit film Quartet, starring Dame Maggie Smith, Sir Michael Gambon and Billy Connolly, filmed at Hedsor House, Buckinghamshire – but it’s not as far removed from reality as you might think.
Read more by Maria Fitzpatrick, in The Telegraph 28th February 2013
Thousands of people due to retire in the next few years should end up with larger pensions, thanks to new rules, which will come into force next week, designed to improve the sale of annuities.
On March 1 the Association of British Insurers will launch a new code of conduct that should prevent those retiring being trapped by substandard annuity contracts, which could rob them of tens of thousands of pounds over their lifetime.
Teresa Hunter writes in The Telegraph, 26th February 2013
The UK may once have had one of the best-funded pension systems in Europe, but now Britons lag far behind much of the rest of the world when preparing for later life.
Worrying new findings from HSBC show that while the average retirement in the UK is expected to last 19 years, savings will be used up after just seven years. This 12-year shortfall is the worst identified by the study of 15 countries; the UK falls below the US, Australia, Canada, France, China, Brazil and India.
Esther Shaw writes in The Independent, 24th February 2013
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