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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 October 2016

Millions have less than 100 savings

Empty pockets broke penniless poor poverty budget, photo Dan Moyle (Creative Commons)

Empty pockets broke penniless poor poverty budget, photo Dan Moyle (Creative Commons)   (Click to enlarge)

Ellen Kenyon Peers

How much is in your savings account? According to a new report published by the under-threat Money Advice Service, 44% of UK workers have savings of less than 100.

Even in the wealthiest regions, over 30% are 'non-savers'. Although the report identifies low wages and the high cost of living as factors, unfortunately it emphasises respondents saying they lack money management skills.

No doubt this is true for some. But no amount of money management will turn poverty pay into a living wage.

Perhaps the most interesting piece of data, however, is that almost half of 'non-savers' have an income above 30,000 - above the UK median wage. The report states that roughly the same number said they had no financial goals for the next five years.

The average UK rent - excluding London - is 724 a month. This average rises 2.5% every month. And the average house price has skyrocketed to 216,750.

With prices so high, it is easy to see why people earning a real living wage would not set financial goals such as owning their own home. A 25-year mortgage for a one-bed flat in London could cost 2,300 per month.

More council housing is desperately needed, as well as rent control and secure tenancy.

Those unable to save are also at permanent risk of being plunged into debt by a sudden bill or unexpected expense. Even the cheapest funeral, for example, can cost grieving family members around 3,700.

The Socialist Party fights for a 10 minimum wage without exemptions, and living benefits. It shouldn't matter how much is in your savings account. The huge resources of the super-rich could instead provide for all.

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In The Socialist 5 October 2016:


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