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Personal Finance

Volume 405: debated on Wednesday 21 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what research his Department has conducted to assess the financial literacy of consumers with different income levels. [111439]

In 2001 the Department published a research report—Pensions 20001—examining public attitudes to pensions and financial planning for retirement. The research asked people to assess their own knowledge of pensions issues and examined variations in knowledge by income levels. Findings from similar research undertaken by my Department last year will be published in early summer.The Government recognise the importance of financial literacy in decisions about saving for retirement. Drawing on research evidence from my Department, the Financial Services Authority and elsewhere the Green Paper 'Simplicity, security and choice: working and saving for retirement' (Cm 5677) examined some of the barriers to saving and underlined the need for everyone to understand the financial choices they are faced with in preparing for retirement.

1Mayhew, V. (2001) Pensions 2000—Public attitudes to Pensions and Planning for Retirement DSS Research Report No. 130, CDS, Leeds