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Pensioners could get life expectancy guidance

Retirees could be issued guidance on how long they are likely to live, a government minister has said.

22 April 2014

Pensions Minister Steve Webb warned people often underestimate how long they might live and can be left without enough savings.

Estimates of life expectancy would be based on factors such as gender, where they live, and whether they smoke.

The information would help them plan their finances more efficiently, according to the minister.

"We don't have a lot to go on" when planning for retirement, he told the BBC, suggesting that "we might think perhaps about how long our grandparents lived, and of course in the generation since then people are living a lot longer".

"People tend to underestimate how long they're likely to live," he explained, "so we're talking about averages, something very broad-brush.

"Based on your gender, based on your age, perhaps asking one or two basic questions like whether you've smoked or not you can tell somebody that they might, on average, live for another 20 years or so."

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