Thursday, 14 March 2019
Britain is no country for old men looking to live longer and longer lives
“It’s now widely accepted that mortality improvements in the general population since 2011 have been much lower than in the earlier part of this century. Average mortality improvements between 2000 and 2011 were typically over 2 per cent per year but have since fallen to around 0.5 per cent per year. The causes of the slowdown, and whether these current low improvements will persist, remain a subject of considerable debate. The CMI 2018 Model itself reflects increasing evidence that the lower level of improvements may be due to medium or long-term influences, rather than just short-term volatility.”
There maybe trouble ahead, since falling life expectation comes at a time when retirement age is increasing. The state pension age is planned to rise to 68 in 2037 and the Government has floated the idea of increasing it to 70, but will come under pressure to backtrack if longevity continues to drop. Tom Selby, Senior Analyst at the investment firm AJ Bell, has said : “It is somewhat ironic that this latest downgrade in life expectancy projections comes the day after the first increase in the state pension age came into force. If life expectancy improvements stall or even go into decline, questions about whether future increases in the state pension age should be implemented will inevitably grow louder.”
“entirely possible” that the Government's austerity policies have had an impact, while dismissing the idea that humans are reaching the limits of their natural lifespans.