October 2022 | Fair Point | abrdn Financial Fairness Trust Newsletter

31 October 2022

Gourd-ness gracious me, it’s the Halloween edition of the Financial Fairness newsletter

October saw a new Prime Minister and a new Chancellor. They might be new, but it’s important they keep their old promises and uprate benefits in line with inflation. If they don’t, people are in for a horrific time that will last a lot longer than Halloween. Let’s hope they don’t get spooked by the tough times ahead and do the right thing; protect the incomes of the poorest. Sorry, very hard to resist the Halloween-related puns today.

There’s nothing frightful about our October newsletter. Unless you count new research into affordable home ownership published this month from the University of York. Researchers found that although shared ownership can be a good route into home ownership for people on lower incomes, after about 15 years they end up paying the same as people who own outright. But with far less equity of course. Read more on their findings.

OK, one more scary finding. This time from Nest Insight. Earlier this month they found 4 in 10 employees work for an organisation offering the minimum 3% employer pension contribution to all their workers. Nearly 1 in 3 employers offering the minimum said they do this because they believe it is the amount recommended by government. It isn’t. It’s time everyone wised up to what people are going to need to avoid a horror-ble retirement. OK, I’m done now. You can read more on Nest Insight’s findings on auto enrolment here.

Project in focus – Worker Engagement

The UK has one of the lowest levels of worker participation in company decision-making in Europe. This month the High Pay Centre published its latest findings on worker voice. They asked the public about what they thought should be businesses’ priorities, and what they felt their actual priorities were:

  • 60% believe lower and middle level employees have too little say in the running of the companies they work for.
  • 58% felt the top priority for businesses should be delivering better pay and conditions for their workers. Only 18% felt this was actually a top priority. 

The public believes workers should have a greater say and this is supported by 79%, including 77% of people who voted Conservative at the last general election in 2019.

Read more

Stat of the month

£1 billion - The potential high street spending boost if we adapt towns and cities for people with dementia

The International Longevity Centre UK (ILC) found people with dementia are being let down by the high street, retailers and the financial services industry. However, if steps were taken to make services more accessible for this group, ILC believe they could bring in nearly £1bn to the UK economy.

Retail Therapy reports while people with dementia list shopping as one of their favourite activities, one in four give it up after their diagnosis. Three in five people with dementia believe shops aren’t doing enough to help them. The ILC estimates that if shops, banks and leisure activities were more welcoming to people living with dementia and other cognitive impairments, the economy could be boosted via spending by this group.

Read more

Latest Podcast Food Banks

How do we eradicate the need for food banks? We are joined by Emma Revie, CEO of the Trussell Trust to discuss food banks.

How do food banks work? What’s driving the increased need? How can we reduce the need for them?

Listen here or wherever you get your podcasts.