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Poorest pensioners 'at sharp end of credit crunch'

Poorest pensioners 'at sharp end of credit crunch'
10th October 2008

The oldest and poorest pensioners are feeling the pinch more than anyone as a result of the economic downturn, a leading charity says.

Inflation for them has reached nine per cent, compared to 5.4 per cent for non-pensioner households, according to a report conducted by IFS for Age Concern.

The official inflation rate, the report argues, does not provide the complete picture faced by many households - with pensioner households in particular spending a higher than average proportion of their income on food and fuel bills.

"It's clear that the most vulnerable pensioners are bearing the brunt of the huge increases in the cost of living seen recently," argues Gordon Lishman, director general of Age Concern.

He adds that an "emergency package" needs to be put in place for those people in society "who cannot afford to wait for the good times to return".

Earlier this month Age Concern celebrated the launch of Older People's Day, saying it provided a chance to appreciate the contribution made to society by the older generation.

Gordon Lishman called on different age groups within communities to exchange experiences and thus gain mutual benefit from the diversity of UK society.

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