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Can we really depend on the state for future pensions?

The pension industry has never been far from the headlines over the last 10 years as the situation has changed dramatically to the detriment of UK consumers. Only recently we have seen dozens of final salary pension schemes biting the dust and tax changes which have again hit the long-term attractions of personal pensions. The fact that the UK state pension has effectively fallen in real terms over the last few years is another factor which many people continue to overlook in this most difficult of times.

The truth is that the state pension will become less and less of a crutch for many in the UK with a need to arrange personal pensions as early as possible. As we see the cost of living continue to rise, and rumours that UK energy bills may top £2000 a year in the future, it is easy to see why many pensioners and many near the pension age are becoming more and more concerned. The reality for many is that the UK government cannot afford to increase the UK state pension by a sizeable amount in the short to medium term, even if it were inclined to do so.

As we have also seen, the UK benefit system is now out of control and there has been talk that a potential Conservative government would look to rein in benefit payments and try to "encourage" more and more people to go back to work.

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