David Gauke: raising state pension in line with longevity 'benefits everyone'

David Gauke: raising state pension in line with longevity 'benefits everyone'

David Gauke: raising state pension in line with longevity 'benefits everyone'

"Requiring everyone to wait till an ever increasing age to draw a state pension is inflexible and increasingly out of sync with private pensions which can be taken from as early as age 55 and offer people a flexible and personalised transition into retirement".

"When the modern State Pension was introduced in 1948, a 65-year-old could expect to spend 13.5 years in receipt of it - 23 percent of their adult life".

Under current plans, the state pension age will rise to 66 by 2020 and to 67 by 2028.

The offiical retirement age had not been due to rise to 68 by 2046, but this will change under the new proposals, as the Government looks to make savings amid rising life expectancy.

Notwithstanding those challenges, a later state retirement age does not have to be the cause for despair.

The British government now spends 5.2 percent of GDP on pensions, without reform this would rise to 6.5 percent of GDP by 2039-2040, according to its own figures. The proposed increases are really an example of the state pension age playing catch up with life expectancy.

"There is a balance to be struck between funding of the state pension in years to come whilst also ensuring fairness for future generations of taxpayers".

The Shadow Work and Pension Secretary, Debbie Abrahams referred to the announcement as, "an astonishing continuation of austerity".

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The state pension age is now set to increase to 68 between 2044 and 2046, but under new proposals this would be brought forward seven years.

In response to Mr Gauke's comments, Labour MP Abrahams said, "we can not allow this Government to push people to work longer and longer to pay for its failed austerity agenda".

Former pensions minister Steve Webb, who served under the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government, said bringing forward the rise was the right move.

No one born on or before 5 April 1970 will see a change to their current proposed state pension age.

'It's ironic that the government is proceeding with an accelerated increase in the state pension age days after statistics show improvements in life expectancy may be levelling off, meaning this increase may be less justified on affordability grounds'.

The state pension launched in 1908, with the first payments coming in on 1 January 1909 to around 500,000 people over the age of 70. Longer living doesn't simply mean extra years lived in infirmity in very old age, it also means tomorrow's middle aged will be healthier and more able and willing to work than their counterparts in the past.

Work and pensions secretary David Gauke has denied he announced an increase in the state pension age on the same day as the BBC released details of how much it pays its star presenters in an attempt to "bury bad news".

The state pension is now £159.55 a week for those qualified to receive the full amount.

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