The Personal Finance Society (PFS) is calling on the new
Government to establish an independent commission in a bid to avoid
an intergenerational savings crisis.
Ahead of the Queen's Speech on Wednesday, the PFS said the
reality of facing a minority Government for an indefinite period
means it would be very difficult for tough but necessary decisions
to be made about controversial issues like funding state pensions
and long-term care.
Normally, these issues would be dealt with through a decisive
election result, followed by a series of budgets and spending
reviews, but with the Government's hands tied by Brexit
negotiations and no overall majority, it is likely that difficult
decisions would be kicked into the long grass.
However, the PFS argues people have the right to know the facts
to help influence plans for their financial future now, and to do
that effectively they need to know how much state help they can
expect in future, and where current benefits are likely to be
reduced or state retirement age moved even further out.
Politicians must accept that they can't set out a clear vision
of the future of welfare and individual responsibility on their
own, and that they need an authoritative, expert voice to help them
conduct a conversation with the public about complex welfare
The PFS is calling on the new Government to establish an
independent commission of experts, tasked with encouraging a
savings culture in the UK.
Keith Richards, chief executive at the PFS, said: "We can't
ignore the demographic and economic pressures facing our economy,
and the new Government has to take responsibility for easing these
pressures by making difficult decisions and introducing brave but
prudent measures so that the public have a choice of mitigating any
personal impact on them and their families.
"Understandably, Brexit will consume Government resources in the
next couple of years but we must not let it detract from the
economic and social challenges we face at home.
"An independent pensions commission was able to achieve a cross
party consensus about auto-enrolment that has stood the test of
time. We need the ongoing involvement of independent experts to
avoid an inter-generational savings crisis."
Following publication of John Cridland's Independent Review
of the State Pension Age in March, the PFS wrote to Chancellor
Philip Hammond, urging the Government to rethink its short-term
pensions strategy and to move forward with the report's pragmatic
In the letter, the PFS also put forward the idea of an
independent pensions commission, tasked with establishing
sustainable measures aimed at addressing the issues facing the
public in retirement.