[Image: Thinkstock.]

It would be wrong to use the findings of the Resolution Foundation to turn public opinion against pensioners.

Their incomes have not grown hugely – it is the incomes of working families that have shrunk due to Tory economic policies.

But 12.29 per cent of the government’s annual spending went on pensions in 2014, with a further 5.13 per cent on pension tax reliefs. That’s more money than was spent on the NHS.

You can see why the Tories might want to find an excuse to restrict this spending.

There are plenty of opportunities to create dissent – with more senior citizens still working, why do they need pensions? If they have private pensions, why should they have money from the state? If they own their own home, that is an asset that could be used to support them, rather than demanding money from the state.

These are silly arguments because the answer to all of them is the same: They have fully paid their National Insurance and are entitled to the money they draw out.

But This Writer fears Tories don’t think like that.

They’ll want to point out that working-age people are struggling to find gainful employment; that private pension funds have been raided and many are no longer available; and that owning their own home has been priced out of the reach of most working people.

These are all due to Tory policies but that won’t stop them, if they think they can get away with a shift in public thinking and a saving they can turn into a tax cut for the rich.

They have been looking for this kind of opportunity for years.

Typical pensioner incomes now outstrip those of working-age people, a report from the Resolution Foundation says.

Pensioners are also now more likely than their predecessors to still be in work, own a home and have access to generous private pensions, it adds.

The think tank says growth in pensioner incomes has been coupled with weak income growth for working-age people.

Pensioner households are now £20 a week better off than working age households, but were £70 a week worse off in 2001.

However, the report, called As Time Goes By, adds: “This strong growth is not the result of a boom time for all pensioners, with most finding that their personal situation changes little from year-to-year. “

Source: Pensioner incomes ‘outstrip those of working families’ – BBC News

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