“Theresa May, speaking at the launch of her leadership campaign, highlighted the growing wealth gap between generations, and has repeatedly highlighted her promise to foster an ‘economy that works for everyone’. Meanwhile, in November last year the work and pensions committee issued its third report on intergenerational fairness and made recommendations to the government on policies to tackle intergenerational imbalances.
“Today’s figures from the ONS re-ignites the argument that intergenerational unfairness is a threat.
“While at first glance, the data paints a positive picture that disposable income across the population is on the rise. However, in reality the majority of working households are seeing a decline in their disposable income, with the overall rise being skewed by the surge income for retired households as the ‘baby boomer’ generation retires.
“The ONS points out retired households have seen a 13% increase since 2007/08 in their income, while non-retired households have seen a 1.2% decrease in the same period.
“This gives government further cause for thought to pursue a policy agenda focused on rebalancing the intergenerational contract. The most obvious targets are the state pension triple lock, which seems likely to be replaced with an earnings linked system, and universal pension benefits, like the winter fuel allowance, which could come under scrutiny.”