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State Pension Age review - HL comment

John Cridland has today published a consultation paper setting out the interim position of his review of state pension age on behalf of the DWP.

Tom McPhail, Head of Retirement Policy:

"This interim report confirms that unless adjustments are made to the triple lock, or to state pension ages to push them up faster, then the cost of the state pension will increase by 1% to 2% of GDP from a projected level of 5% of GDP in 2020.

We would encourage John Cridland and the government to look at the private sector's ability to use medical underwriting and the enhanced annuity market to deliver better value from the state pension to those with reduced life expectancy.

In the meantime, everyone of whatever age should take the time to explore their retirement income prospects, taking account of both state and private pension savings."

This interim report is published less than a year after the launch of the new state pension, which itself took several years of hard work to deliver. It gives a comprehensive overview of the issues and challenges posed by state pension policy. The fact that it runs to 100 pages is indicative of the complexity of the subject.

  • Life expectancy is improving, however it remains unpredictable and is not a rising tide which lifts all boats equally.
  • Individuals and groups across the population are still not all well served by private and state pension provision. This is variously true of carers, the self-employed, Generation X, the long term sick, some occupations, some women and some regional and ethnic populations.
  • State pension costs have to be controlled if they are not to rise inexorably in the future.
  • Longer and more flexible working lives are an essential element of delivering fair, affordable and sustainable retirement incomes into the future.

NOTES TO EDITORS

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