James Coney  

Warning signs of property stagnation

James Coney

James Coney

Property beats pensions

When you look at public perceptions of pensions it really is rather dispiriting.

Ploughing through polling from Ipsos Mori, I stumbled across its Issues Index for October, which picks out what people are most worried about in Britain.

Just 1 per cent were worried about pensions, social security and benefits – fewer than were worried about a lack of faith in politics. It was the same as race relations, drug abuse and public services (not including the NHS).

Ipsos’ perceptions of money survey (which was from 2015) lays bare how people routinely make wild assumptions about everything. For example, they think the cost of raising a child is £50,000 – when it is closer to £229,000.

And they think that they only need to save £124,000 to get an annual income of £25,000 a year. Good luck with that.

As always though, when it comes to house prices, everyone was more or less spot on about average prices.

Only when we get out of this obsession with property will we ever start to save more.

Don’t feed the trolls

The debate over equalising the women’s state pension age is one of the most toxic I have ever witnessed while writing about finance.

Twitter is packed with people who seem to relish nothing else than heckling, accusing, and insulting those who feel they have been hard done-by. Some of these know-it-alls are financial services professionals who seem to think that just because they heard of the state pension rises, then everyone must have.

It is shameful and shows a dreadful lack of understanding about personal circumstances and the complexities of life.

The Waspi campaigners – whatever you may think of them personally – must be allowed to state their case: the government will either hear them, or not. But they deserve to do it without being shouted down by internet trolls.

James Coney is money editor of the Sunday Times