THE PENSIONS AGE review being undertaken by the government has received a jolt with the recommendation from its own experts for either no retirement age or one significantly higher than the current 65.
Pushing the review is pending European anti-age discrimination law, which means a decision has to be made by government on whether employers can set an age limit on their workers.
The FT says the issue has divided the Cabinet, and the Pensions Commission has now provided that not-so-helpful advice.
The Commission’s chairman Adair Turner says raising the retirement age would have no affect on people’s ability to claim basic state pension because people can already claim that income while still working.
AS IF INVESTMENT bankers did not earn enough, now comes news the lock-in deal implemented when Goldman Sachs floated some five years ago has come to an end, enabling lucky employees and partners to sell nearly $5bn worth of shares.
At a premium of at least 60% above the float price, people such as BP chairman Peter Sutherland will be in a position to cash in handsomely, The Times reports.
GS is not concerned about the stock overhang, however, as it says limits on daily trades will work to avoid a mass amount of new paper hitting the market and driving down its share price.
LTC INSURANCE providers may eake out an angle to news the Department of Health is to repay £180m in care home fees that were wrongly charged for services that should have been free, The Daily Telegraph writes.
Following an investigation stretching back to 1996, the Department has determined that there were serious errors in how strategic health authorities handled applications for long term care, particularly in relation to the issue of clinical nursing needs.
Nursing home residents are supposed to have their care provided free by the state if they require the services of a registered nurse.
However, the government’s approach has irked the Opposition, which notes that people who sold their homes to fund LTC will not be compensated for associated losses, but will only receive a refund plus RPI-linked interest for the amount paid in error.
HOUSE PRICES COULD fall in the second half of the year, but house price inflation for all of 2004 is likely to still be as high as 16%, according to Halifax’ latest monthly price index published yesterday, the Telegraph says.
That is double the rate of inflation forecast at the start of the year by Britain’s biggest mortgage lender.
Sales will start to trail off as the effects of interest rate increases since last November start to impact on consumers, Halifax predicts.
The Scotsman adds house prices will rocket even faster north of the border, to an annualised rate of 18% by the year end.
Part of the reason is house price-to-earnings ratios are lower in Scotland, meaning there is more scope for an upside to the market, the paper says.
This comes as ratings agency Standard & Poor’s added its name to the list of those joining Bank of England governor Mervyn King in warning of a pending bursting of the house price bubble.IFAonline
Paul Bruns and Elaine Parkes
3,000 left to transfer
Record numbers of people aged 90 plus
From 3 to 10 October