The Forgotten fifties – low waged and living alone they are not the happy baby boomers we read of

by | Career, Retirement

Today (3 May 2017) saw the publication of A mid-life less ordinary? which focuses on the forgotten fifties

The Forgotten Fifties. The people who are on low income and are not heading for an easy time in retirement – often low waged, living alone, no money to save.

Whilst there is a lot in the news about older people being very comfortably off, able to be the bank of mum and dad many struggle. little attention is paid to The Forgotten Fifties.

From the report: The Forgotten Fifties are older people in low and middle income households are:

  • Working more than ever. Around three in four people in these households are in work, compared to just 58% in 1997-98. Workers aged 50+ have accounted for two thirds of overall employment growth since 2010, including two thirds of self-employment growth.
  • Earning relatively little. Four in five workers earn less than the typical annual salary of 21,000, while half of working women from older LMI households earn less than 12,600.
  • Far less wealthy than their better-off peers. Their typical level of wealth (including housing, pensions and other savings) is, at 245,000, less than a third of the wealth held by higher income households (825,000) of the same age.

More than 38% of households are now single person households, and we know how much more expensive it is to live alone. This then impacts on the ability to save for retirement.

We need to stop thinking of all people over 50 as wealthy baby boomers

David Finch, Senior Economic Analyst at the Resolution Foundation, said:

The best way to help Britains two million older households on low and middle incomes is get Britains jobs boom back on track. This should be a top priority for the next government.

Read the full report,A mid-life less ordinary?

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