Retirement planning one of five goals in financial wellbeing strategy

A UK-wide strategy to transform people's financial wellbeing in a decade has been launched today by the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS)

Under a government mandate, MaPS produced the strategy to establish five ‘agendas for change’ and set goals to be achieved by 2030.

The first of these goals is to change financial foundations so that 6.8 million children and young people get a meaningful financial education, which would be an increase of two million from 2019.

Second on the agenda is the creation of a “nation of savers.” Designed to help those struggling with bills and payments, deemed “the least financially-resilient segment and the most likely to be over-indebted”, this goal will help people to build some form of savings buffer.

Again this is expected to affect the lives of two million more people than in 2019. The aim has been made in response to MaPS findings that 11.5 million people have less than £100 in savings to fall back on.

Third, according to the service, “Nine million people often use credit to pay for food or essential bills”. To tackle this, and the impact it has on credit scores, MaPS has set the goal of enabling two million fewer people to use credit to pay for food or bills over the next 10 years.

Better debt advice is the fourth point of action, given just 32% of those who need debt advice access it.

In the fifth and final point MaPS said its target is to educate five million more people on how to plan for their later lives, as “22 million people say they don’t know enough to plan for their retirement".

Having set out its goals for 2030, in the first half of 2020 MaPS will work with experts across the public, private and voluntary sectors to create a concrete plan of action.

Taking the different needs of each part of the UK into account, specific plans will be put in place for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland respectively.

Hector Sants, chair of MaPS, said: “The UK strategy sets out our ambition to transform financial wellbeing over the next decade.

“The importance of financial wellbeing is under-appreciated. It is not only about financial capability but also feeling secure, in control, confident and empowered in relation to money. It is central to personal wellbeing and thus to living a contented life.”

Guy Opperman, minister for pensions and financial inclusion, added that the government wants to make financial decision-making as easy as possible, so that those who need the most financial support find it simple to do so.