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Huge private cost of public sector pensions

Liberal Democrat research has found that for every £1 a private sector worker contributes to their own pension, they are in effect paying 91p into a public sector worker’s retirement scheme in tax.

The research found that in 2005, total employer contributions to public sector pension schemes were £16.124bn while total employee contributions to private pension schemes was £14bn.

The LibDems say that priv-ate sector workers make up four-fifths of the workforce, meaning that around £12.8bn of public sector employer pension contributions are paid for by private sector workers.

LibDem Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Danny Alexander says the Government is in danger of creating a two-tier system of retirement provision for public and private sector workers.

Alexander says: “In 40 years, private sector workers may well find themselves working seven years longer than public sector workers and still retiring with a pension worth considerably less. An independent commission should be established to look at both the fairness and long-term sustainability of public sector pensions.”

Hargreaves Lansdown head of pensions research Tom McPhail says: “The Government needs to address this huge issue with a full and proper debate about the remuneration and pension provision for public and private sector workers.”


Friends quotes for income protection online

Friends Provident has launched an online income protection quote service. Advisers can now quote and produce an illustration for individual income protection and houseperson’s cover through the company’s website.Friends says income protection quotes can be produced on a level or increasing basis, with the option to choose a weekly benefit amount or total premium figure. […]

Food for thought

Commodities investors are looking to reap the benefits of growing demand for food and new fuel sources, says Samantha Downes

Ethical funds bring in the green

Ethical funds under management have grown by almost a third in the past year according to new figures from the Investment Management Assocation.The vehicles now have a total of £5.6bn asset under management within 50 funds, compared to £4.26bn at the same time in 2006.Ethical funds have traditionally had a reputation for being niche investments […]

Home makers

With a shortage of available housing and spiralling prices putting buying a home beyond the reach of many, the Government intends to act to provide some much needed assistance in the market. But are these measures enough, asks Will Henley


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