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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 188

Date:- 19 February 2005

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INTERNATIONAL research from AXA, the global insurance company, reveals that the average age, which workers in the UK would like to retire, is 56, but realistically they expect to work until they are 62. 

The findings revealed that on average people in Britain start preparing for their retirement at the age of 31 and are saving around £198 a month. However, 1 in 3 has yet to start preparing for life after work and only 56% expect to have a comfortable retirement.

Country Age of preparing for retirement Savings/month for retirement:-

UK 31 € 285 (£198) 
New Zealand 32 €309 
USA 34 €531 
Canada 34 €323 
Germany 34 €241 
The Netherlands 35 €199 
Australia 36 €405 
France 37 €203 
Belgium 37 €226 
Portugal 46 €195 
Spain 46 €208 
Italy 51 €160 
Japan 52 €293

Steve Folkard, Head of Pensions Marketing at AXA said:- "Our research shows that retirement planning is high on the agenda for many people in the UK. However, there is still a sizeable proportion of the working population who have yet to make any plans for retirement and unless they start soon, they may find that they will have to continue working until their late 60's or even 70's." 

Some of the arrangements Britain's working population have made to help secure an income in retirement are; 64% of Briton's working population claim to have life assurance policies, which they will use to help fund their retirements. This is closely followed by 63% who say they have pension plans with their employers. 

Investment/savings used by people % of population using these savings:-

Life Insurance /policies 64% 

Insurance policy / pension fund provided by:- employer 63% 

Other pension scheme:- 49% 

Real estate:- 52% 

Other Savings:- 61% 

Expectations of the cost of living in retirement 

Despite Britons being the first to start thinking about retirement and using a range of investments to save for it, only 56% of the working population expect to have a comfortable life after work. 59% of the country's retired population consider their retirement income to be sufficient. 

Elsewhere around the world, only 10% of Japanese people in work expect to have comfortable retirements, as do less than half of the working populations in Portugal 40%, France 45%, Italy 46% and Spain 47%. This might help explain why people in these countries don't start thinking about retirement until much later on in life than people in the UK, for example. 

Steve Folkard said:- "Our research shows that around the world, retirement planning is high on people's agendas and that there is a great deal of anxiety as to what life after work holds for them. 

In the UK there is a growing realisation amongst workers that unless they do more about saving for retirement they will not have the benefits that the current generation of pensioners enjoy.

The good news is that people have can have a high degree of control over what sort of income they can expect when they stop work and the sooner they start saving the better off they are likely to be."

Life At University Set To Go On Show

THE AIMHIGHER roadshow visits The Wirral this week as part of a national campaign to highlight the benefits of a university education. The roadshow is now in its fourth year and recent research conducted on-board the trailers revealed a 43% positive shift in students' attitudes to higher education following the Aimhigher presentation.

It will be visiting the following schools whilst in The Wirral:-

Bebington High (21 Feb)
Wirral Grammar Boys School (22 Feb)
Wirral Grammar Girls School (23 Feb)
St. Anselm's College (24 Feb)
Weatherhead High School (25 Feb)
Wallasey School (28 Feb)
West Kirby Grammar School (1 March)
Hilbre High School (2 March)
Pensby Boys School (3 March)
Pensby Girls School (4 March)

The roadshow takes place on board a state-of-the-art 27ft trailer and the futuristic setting is proving a popular alternative to the classroom for around 3,000 Year 9 pupils each week. Supported by the Royal Bank of Scotland, the roadshow encourages more young people from backgrounds with little or no family experience of higher education to go to university. 

Recent graduate and university expert, Rhona Moir, explains the popularity of the roadshow:- "The roadshow is about inspiring young people and sometimes you have to break from the norm to do that. The pupils watch a short film and get to use laptops that look at all the routes from GCSEs to university, whether it's A-levels or learn-as-you-work vocational courses like a BTEC or advanced GNVQ. 

The main thing is to get young people excited about higher education and to realise they can have a job doing something they love and that rewards them financially as well."

Kim Howells, the Minister for Higher Education commented:- "Aimhigher is playing a vital role in giving students from every background the confidence to enjoy Higher Education. With over 50,000 courses on offer, the ending of upfront tuition fee payments as of 2006 and greater support for those from lower income families, everybody should be able to match their own skills with a qualification, and improve their long-term future."

Simon Connolly, Royal Bank of Scotland's Regional Manager added:- "This is the fourth year we have supported the roadshow and every year the reaction from both students and teachers just gets better. It is great to be part of something that gets young people thinking about their future in a stimulating way."

Compatition Winner

Chapter Size 18-24.

WELL done to Minna Moffatt from Southport, as you have won last weeks compatition for £150 dash around the Liverpool MK One Shop.

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