Long-term strategy to improve the UK’s financial wellbeing

The Money and Pensions Service (Maps) has launched a 10-year ‘financial wellbeing’ strategy to help savers across the UK in five key areas, including financial education, saving, credit, debt advice and retirement.

Maps have set out five ‘agendas for change and goals to be achieved by 2030. The pillars of the strategy are as follows:

  • Financial Foundations, which aims to give 6.8 million children and young people a financial education;
  • A nation of savers, which will help the 16.7 million working-age people who struggle to save regularly;
  • Credit counts, which aims to reduce the number of people using credit to pay for food or bills by 2 million;
  • Better debt advice, which aims to get 2 million more people getting the debt advice they need; and
  • Future focus which aims to help 28.6 million people understand enough to plan for their later lives

The strategy, which is based on research showing that people are saving nowhere near enough to plan for their future, will also examine factors which can make people particularly susceptible to financial detriment, such as mental health conditions and gender.

Maps has said that a lack of financial wellbeing has knock-on effects for mental health, physical health and relationships. Good financial wellbeing is also better for the wider economy, as financially secure people are able to invest money for retirement.

However, critics claim that the initiative’s ‘future focus’ pillar, which concerns saving and investing for the long-term, may blur the lines between what constitutes guidance and advice. As one commentator remarked, it is difficult to offer personalised support without “straying into advice”.

Posted in Trevor Wilshire.