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Government omits pensions in guide to savings

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
A government guide on ways to save money in 2017 has been criticised for failing to mention pensions.

The Treasury and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) today published a Ways to Save in 2017 infographic giving consumers tips about how to make their money go further this year.

It mentions products such as the junior ISA, Help to Buy ISA, Lifetime ISA, premium bonds and regular cash and stocks and shares ISAs.

However, there is no mention of pensions or the Help to Save scheme, which is expected by April 2018.

Tom McPhail, head of retirement policy at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “This is illustrative of the government’s struggle to present a coherent joined-up policy on savings, investments and provision for later life; it’s as if they’ve completely forgotten about pensions and Help to Save.

“The Treasury and the DWP have to be able to show that their respective policies across long-term saving, retirement and the ageing society actually join together in ways that work for ordinary investors.”

On Twitter, Steven Cameron, pensions director at Aegon, said: “If an adviser ignored pensions as a means for saving for retirement they’d be in trouble!

“The Treasury has specifically brought ISAs and pensions closer via LISA and must now present balanced facts.”

Also responding to the leaflet on Twitter, former pensions minister Ros Altmann said: “Horrified that Treasury has just published a guide to educate about saving yet it does not mention pensions at all.

“The idea of such infographics is good, but they need to be accurate and reliable

“This infographic is funded by taxpayers, designed to educate the public but highly misleading.

“HMT shd be ashamed of public info campaign that fails to mention best way to save for later life.”

The Treasury said the infographic gave details about the products available to help people’s money go further in 2017. A similar infographic published last year did include details about saving into a pension because there had been changes to pensions policy.

(This story was updated on 04/01/17 to include new comments.)

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