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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Saga Q4 analysis of UK over-50s




It has taken forever for Saga to publish this report but it was worth waiting for. 


In my view this Saga analysis gives the best insight into what is going on in the households of older people in the UK. Its strength is that it is regular and breaks the older population down by age and socio economic group plus it is very professionally produced.


These two charts give a good view of what is happening. The younger old are still suffering the most as they get bashed by the demands of their kids and parents. The older-old, whilst still suffering, have less to worry about - other of course that their bodies are ageing!


The bottom of the socio economic scale as always does the worse. Doesn't matter if we are talking about yoofs or their grandparents.


Saga' main conclusion about this research was that there were sign for hope because the downward trend seems to be stabalising. My take on this is a bit different. 


There is only so much doom and gloom that people can take. To begin with it makes them apprehensive and they genuinely suffer if their disposable income reduces. Then there is a period when the misery level reaches a plateau.


What comes next? This all depends on the economy - stupid. The smallest signs of hope lead to a disproportional increase in the feel-good factor. Another quarter of increasingly bad news will wrench the index lower. In the immortal words of Clint Eastwood: “You've got to ask yourself one question: 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya punk?” 


I put my "feel lucky" measure at less than 30%. Dick Stroud

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