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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2000): Pensions - UK

MINISTER HAS NOT RULED OUT PENSION AGE OF 70

S. Targett

Financial Times, Nov. 19th 1999, p. 5

Reports that the government has not ruled out raising the state pension age from 65 to 70 at some point in the future.

NEW STATE PENSIONS MAY COST 6BN MORE

N. Timmins

Financial Times, Dec. 3rd 1999, p.3

Reports that the government's aim is to get everyone earning over £9,500 a year to contract out of the new second state pension, using stakeholder or other private and occupational pensions to top up their basic state pension. If that happens, the net extra cost of the new second-tier state pension will rise to £4.4bn by 2050 under one of the contracting out regimes proposed and to £6.2bn under the other. At the same time rebates paid to those who contract out will mean income from National Insurance contributions will fall by £15.1bn by 2050.

SAVING GRACE

M. Moynagh and R. Worsley

Guardian, Nov. 15th 1999, p. 22

Argue that a fixed retirement age and both state and occupational retirement pensions should be phased out and replaced by a system of saving, by individuals on what the authors call the 'knapsack' model. Individuals would build up savings from contributions by themselves, the state and their employers which they could use to meet needs throughout life, including retirement income.

STAKEHOLDER SCHEME 'BLIGHT' HITS PENSION FUND PLANNING

S. Targett

Financial Times, Dec. 16th 1999, p. 6

Uncertainty over the government's new stakeholder pension is causing 'planning blight' for the managers of Britain's top pension funds, forcing them to postpone plans to upgrade their occupational schemes.

THE THIRD WAY FOR PENSIONS (BY WAY OF THATCHERISM AND AVOIDING TODAY'S PENSIONERS)

A. Walker

Critical Social Policy, no. 61, 1999, p. 511-527

Article consists of a critique of New Labour's pension policies as set out in the green paper 'Partnership in Pensions'. It provides nothing for the vast majority of pensioners living on low incomes above income support level and nothing to fulfill the pledge that all pensioners will share in rising prosperity. It is not a partnership that is proposed, but a much reduced role for state provision, focusing on the poorest, with the private sector taking responsibility for the rest.

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