Retirement income

Election scorecard

National Seniors’ election campaign, Seniors Vote 2010, drew to a close with a rally and press conference outside Parliament House in Canberra on Tuesday. Check out the full scorecard of what the parties promised below.

After setting election demands and conducting meet-the-candidate forums in 13 marginal seats across the country, the verdict is that both major parties, running small target campaigns, had avoided the big issues.

Seniors welcome labor pledge

National Seniors has welcomed Labor’s pledge to allow pensioners to annualise their employment income rather than declare it fortnightly.

Under the current system of fortnightly income reporting requirements pensioners are finding their government payments slashed after taking on seasonal work such as supervising exams.

National Seniors chief executive, Michael O’Neill, said the change would fix a system anomaly which has existed since pension reforms were introduced in 2009.

Coalition’s pledge to seniors

National Seniors has welcomed the Coalition’s pledge to index the income limits on the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card and introduce an employer incentive payment for older workers if they are voted into government.

Chief executive, Michael O’Neill, described the promise to index the income limits on the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card as a “vote winner” for self funded retirees.

“For low income retirees who don’t receive a pension, the card and what it entitles them to, such as cheaper medicines and help with utilities, is gold,” said O’Neill.

Improving super returns too little too late for many seniors

Despite the recent improvement in performance of super funds older Australians still feel let down and are calling on the Cooper Review of superannuation to take action.

National Seniors, the nation's peak body for older Australians, has this week submitted its response to the Cooper Review's preliminary reports.

Retirees welcome interest rate rise

Self-funded retirees welcomed this week’s announcement of a 25 basis point increase in interest rates.

Commenting on the announcement by the Reserve Bank of Australia, National Seniors chief executive Michael O'Neill said that often self-funded retirees are dependent on interest from their savings to make ends meet.

“Many will have seen interest rates fall and other investments suffer during the global financial crisis, so they will welcome any increase in the interest rate,” he said.

Seniors hit back over ‘selfish’ boomers

Older Australians have hit back at Queensland's Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Planning, David Gibson, over his claims this week that baby boomers are “incredibly selfish”.

The Courier Mail reported that at a community forum on the Sunshine Coast Gibson said, “It never ceases to amaze me when I listen to the baby boomers who are just incredibly selfish in expecting that other generations will pay for their retirement.”

Retirees Needs and Their (In)Tolerance for Risk

The most important financial needs for Australian retirees are:

- meeting their medical expenses;
- having their income last for their lifetime; and
- making sure their purchasing power keeps pace with inflation.

Addressing these three goals provides peace of mind to senior Australians, particularly when their essential living expenses are covered by regular income. 

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