§ 10. Mr. Simon Coombs
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what proportion of recently retired pensioners income derives from state benefits.
§ Mr. Hague
We estimate that, in the latest year for which information is available, 36 per cent. of the income of recently retired pensioners was derived from state benefits.
1. Source: Family Expenditure Survey.
2. Recently retired pensioners are pensioner units where the head of the unit is aged less than five years above the state pension age.
§ Mr. Lilley
We estimate that on average, between 1979 and 1989, pensioners' income from investments rose by 130 per cent. in real terms to £23.10 a week. Reliable information on the average value of all capital assets held by pensioners is not available, but just over half all pensioners own their own home. In England, the estimated average value of owner-occupied homes of those over 65 is more than £42,000.136W
following table. Figures are available only for years when a census of employment was carried out and the results prior to 1981 are not comparable with later years.
§ 1. Mr. Willetts
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what percentage of pensioners retiring(a) in 1979 and (b) in the latest year for which figures are available, had incomes from savings; and what was the real average level of savings on each of those two dates
Information is not available in the form requested because the family expenditure survey does not tell us when people retire. The information in the table is about those who have recently retired—that is, where the head of the unit is aged less than five years over state pension age. The sample size of those one year over state pension age would be too small to be reliable.
Income from savings Recently retired pensioners Percentage of units with investment income Average amount for those in receipt1 1979 1989 1979 1989 Pensioner couples 73 87 21.60 41.50 Single pensioners 60 64 12.60 31.50 All pensioner units 68 78 18.20 38.10 1 £ per week, 1989 prices.
Source: Family Expenditure survey.
2. Recently retired pensioner units are defined as: single woman aged 60 to 64; single men aged 65 to 69; and couples in which the husband is aged 65 to 69.
§ 15. Mr. Nicholls
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many pensioner households had incomes above the national average in 1979, and in the latest year for which figures are available.
§ 1. Mr. Hague
The information is in the table:
Number of pensioners above contemporary average income (Millions of people) 1979 1988–89 BHC AHC BHC AHC Pensioner couples 0.8 0.9 1.0 1.2 Single pensioners 0.7 0.8 0.7 0.9 All pensioners 1.5 1.8 1.7 2.1
Percentage of pensioners above contemporary average income 1979 1988–89 BHC AHC BHC AHC Pensioner couples 18 20 20 23 Single pensioners 16 20 15 21 All pensioners 17 20 18 22
Source: Family Expenditure Survey.
2. BHC and AHC denote before and after housing costs respectively.
3. 1988–89 denotes a combined sample from the 1988 and 1989 Family Expenditure Surveys.
4. Figures have been calculated using the methodology used to produce the Households Below Average Income results. They therefore relate to individual pensioners (rather than pensioner units) and assume all members of a household share the same standard of living.
§ 20. Mr. Whittingdale
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what estimate he has of the total value of an average pensioner's savings, investments and home; and what was the figure in 1979.
§ Mr. Hague
The information is not available in the form requested. In 1989, the latest date for which information is available, the average weekly investment income received by pensioners was £23.10. This represented an increase of 130 per cent. over the average sum of £10.00 received in 1979. Home ownership among pensioners increased from 40 per cent. to 52 per cent. over the same period, with 94 per cent. of pensioner owner occupiers owning their homes outright.