Aifa and Aegon are lobbying the Government to implement new proposals to rebuild a savings culture in the UK, including “saveback” schemes as an alternative to cashback at checkouts.
Aifa and Aegon last week published a white paper setting out eight measures they say the Government could implement quickly, using current technology, infrastructure and legislation.
These include the introduction of a saving facility that people can use when making purchases with cards. Rather than getting cashback, a saveback option would allow their purchase price to be rounded up, with the excess deposited in a savings account.
The white paper also proposes the creation of savings networks in workplaces, in local communities and online, as well as the removing the £150 limit on the amount of financial advice employers can provide for their staff tax-free.
Aifa and Aegon are also calling for more demanding financial education targets in schools and school-based saving clubs.
Aifa director general Chris Cummings says: “Given the current economic challenges, we believe it is vital the new Government acts decisively to restore a savings culture in the UK. Individually, and as a nation, we need to rediscover thrift and true prudence. While politicians of all parties agree that saving is a good thing, no one can set out exactly how they would encourage it.
“This white paper brings fresh thinking to the debate and sets out a policy approach based on how real people think and behave.”
Aegon head of corporate affairs Francis McGee says: “Simple measures such as developing saveback facilities alongside existing cashback and encouraging savings networks in the workplace could crease the right environment for people to take some initial steps. Our report outlines some practical proposals the Government can adopt, based on technology that is already available, and on how people think and behave in today’s world.”