Categories: Economy

Retired senior couple looking at  copyspace

Many Americans will know the worry and concerns that can arise when it comes to funds for retirement. As many reports have illustrated, there is a retirement crisis looming whereby many people may find themselves without sufficient funds to continue with the standard of living that they have become accustomed to and some may even find themselves in a situation where they do not enough retirement income to cover basic day to day costs.

In a bid to try and help those who are worried about retirement funds and those who are nearing retirements, financial experts are now offering advice on the various considerations that people need to keep in mind when it comes to ensuring they have adequate money for their golden years. This, they believe, will help to make planning and organizing retirement far easier for people, which in turn will help to reduce financial stress and pressure.

Some of the key considerations

A number of considerations have been highlighted as being a crucial part of financial planning for consumers. One of the things that people are being advised to do is make sure they know their budget so that they can ensure they have money to fall back on should they need it. Rather than ploughing all money into investments and then leaving themselves short of ready cash experts are advising people to ensure they have around 12-18 months worth of money to cater for unexpected situations and financial emergencies. This will also eliminate the need to cash in investments too early, which will also impact on retirement funds.

Another thing that people are being urged to consider by financial experts is to ensure they know all of the sources of their retirement income so that they can budget more accurately. Although social security will cover part of the average person’s retirement income it will not be sufficient to fund retirement completely so people need to consider the other sources of retirement money that will be coming in so that they know how much they will be receiving in total.

A final and vital consideration that needs to be kept in mind is how much risk the person needs to or can afford to take when it comes to their investments. People are being warned not to make rash decisions or take risks that they know they cannot afford to as otherwise they will be left facing problems when it comes to having adequate money.  

Categories: Economy


The United Kingdom has been intensely clamping down on the payday loan industry for a couple of years now. Everything from reforming the way the industry operates to changing the way they seek government approval, the financial alternative has really been given a makeover in Britain.

With the crackdown, one would conclude that everything would be fine in the payday loan industry. Nope. According to a report, consumers are still experiencing troubles in this sector.

According to a new annual review report covering the 2015-2016 financial year, the Financial Ombudsman Service says complaints about payday loans have nearly tripled in the past year, even with rigorous regulations for the often chastised industry. The number of payday loan complaints rose 178 percent, from 1,157 to 3,216.

But the ombudsman isn’t really displeased with the numbers. In fact, this is a good thing, the report suggests, because it shows that consumers are beginning to be aware “of their rights when things go wrong.” Since the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has reined in the industry’s alleged unfair practices, which gained a lot of publicity, consumers are a lot more heightened to what is right and what is wrong.

The FCA officially came down on the payday loan industry in April 2014 with new rules and regulations. They consisted of capping interest rates and default charges, limiting payday loan advertisements, preventing customers with existing payday loans from taking out additional loans and mandating affordability checks on the part of payday loan stores. Advicates are trying to extend these new mandates to include websites such as Landmark Cash who is one of the larger lender matching services.

The number of complaints may wane in the few years. The FCA notes that the number of loans from payday lenders has fallen from 6.3 million (2013) to 1.8 million (2015). Some wonder if the payday loan industry could ever really be trusted to operate on its own, given the number of complaints made even with additional regulations.

“Given by how much complaints increased it is hard to believe it is down to just a few bad apples, particularly after considerable market consolidation. But we welcome the fact people feel confident enough to raise complaints,’ said Carl Packman, research and good practice manager at anti-poverty charity Toynbee Hall, in an interview with the Daily Mail.

“Putting in place stronger measures of intervention for stressed customers such as more proactive advice signposting or information for self-help at the application stage would avoid the problems heard about today.”

Overall, the ombudsman received a total of 340,899 complaints regarding all financial products and services. This is up 3.5 percent from the previous year.

Some of the other complaints the ombudsman received were about payment protection insurance (PPI), which generated 188,700 complaints. Consumers are also griping about fee-charging packaged current accounts, which produces about 120 complaints per day. Here are some other common complaints submitted by consumers to the ombudsman:

  • Hire purchase (3,072)
  • Point-of-sale loans (2,071)
  • Catalogue shopping (939)
  • Debt collecting (707)
  • Credit Broking (563)

In the end, the ombudsman service says, solving the issues today will result in preventing further problems from happening in the future.

Categories: Economy

Retirement fund

A recent report has shown how the plans of many people who retire are being disrupted by unexpected events, with some factors more common than others. Many people who are nearing retirement make plans to do the things that they never got to do while working but no matter how carefully they plan some are finding it impossible to enjoy their retirement in the way they wanted to because of changes in their situations.

The report comes from an expert who has helped many executives plan for their retirement over the years. She said that many of her executives had spent years planning out their retirement but that even the best laid plans had been disrupted by events and unexpected issues that had arisen close to or just after retirement.

Some common issues affecting those retiring

According to the wealth expert, there are a number of very common factors that tend to affect the plans of those retiring or recently retired. She said that she had picked up on these trends over a period of years while working with clients who want to plan for a relaxing and enjoyable retirement with adequate funding and exciting plans.

One of these major problems is deteriorating health of parents. When people retire and still have their parents around, they are often at an age where their health can suffer considerably. This can result in problems for one or both of the retiree’s parents which in turn can have an effect on the ability and desire for those retiring to continue with their own retirement plans, particularly when it comes to plans such as travelling the world where it would involve being away from their families for long periods of time.

Another major factor highlighted by the industry expert was unused vacation homes. When people retire, many plan to spend time in vacation homes that they have invested in often with family members such as their children. However, by the time most people retire their kids are grown up and decide to move away, which results in retirees spending more time visiting their kids in whichever destination they have moved to than using the retirement home.

Finally, another common problem is where an adult child finds themselves in financial trouble, leaving the retired parents to help them out. This can eat into retirement savings and can make it very difficult for some to continue with their plans.

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