Pensioners

Londoners aged over 65

Date 31 August 2017
Date updated 15 January 2018
Overview

Although retirement age varies (and is rising), this data covers people who are aged 65 or older.

19% of pensioners live in poverty in London which is higher than in the Rest of England, where 14% of pensioners are in poverty. Pensioners are under-represented in the poorest 20% of people, with less than 15% of pensioners making up this group. They are also under-represented in the top 20% though, and are concentrated in the middle of the range. The number of pensioners in households in poverty has reduced slightly over the last decade, but there was no repeat of the dramatic reduction in pensioner poverty which we saw in the previous decade.

There are fewer people in all age groups over 45 in London than there are in the Rest of England. Less than 2% of Londoners are over 85.

Pensioners: Indicators

Household work status and the income distribution

This graph shows the position of Londoners within the UK income distribution by several different work statuses. These are: whether they are in households where all adults are working full-time; all work but one or more is part-time; only some work; none work; or all adults are of pension age. Families where all the adults are working full-time are mainly found in higher income quintiles. However, more than 1 in 10 (13%) adults in the poorest 20% are in households where all adults are working full-time. Families where all adults are in work, but one or more are working part- time, are spread fairly evenly across the second, fourth and fifth quintiles with slightly more found in the middle 20%. There are fewer in the poorest 20% at 1 in 10 (10%). Households where some adults work and some do not are common across the entire distribution, …

Low income thresholds

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The poverty measure typically used in this report is being in a household with an income below 60% of the median. This is adjusted for household size and is after taxes such as income tax and Council Tax. The table below puts these poverty thresholds in the context of similar concepts. For example, a working-age couple with an income below £288 a week before removing housing costs (or £248 after) is considered to be in poverty. On an annual basis, this is equivalent to around £14,980 for this family type before housing costs (BHC), or £12,890 after housing costs (AHC). 

However, when members of the public are asked what income is needed to have a socially acceptable minimum standard of living (MIS – Minimum Income Standard – a different concept to poverty), the values are quite a bit higher: £351 a week in Inner Lond…

Poverty by age

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This looks at poverty rates for children, working-age adults, and pensioners in 2003–04 to 2005–06 and in 2013–14 to 2015–16. It uses poverty measured after housing costs (AHC). It splits this by Inner and Outer London, London overall, and the rest of England.

In the three years to 2015–16, 37% of children, 24% of working-age adults, and 19% of pensioners were in poverty in London. In numbers this is 700,000 children, 1.4 million working-age adults, and 200,000 pensioners in poverty.

Compared with a decade earlier, the proportions of both children and pensioners in poverty are lower. The child poverty rate has fallen from 41% to 37%, and the pensioner poverty rate has fallen from 21% to 19%. Despite this, because of population growth, there are now around 90,000 more children in poverty and an unchanged number of pensioners. The proportion…

Work and poverty

This graph looks at poverty by age and family work status. In the three years to 2015/16, the largest single group in poverty were adults in working families, at 830,000, followed by 540,000 adults in workless families in poverty. There were also 480,000 children in working families in poverty, compared with 220,000 in workless families.

These numbers have changed dramatically over time. Compared with a decade earlier, there are 270,000 more adults in working families in poverty, and 180,000 more children in working families in poverty. Their workless counterparts have fallen by 20,000 and 110,000 respectively. Some changes were more drastic in the preceding decade: the number of pensioners and adults in workless families in poverty fell considerably to 2005–06, but has fallen less since. If we look over just the last five years, there ar…

Age profile of London population

London’s population by age is structured differently to the rest of England’s. London has a much higher proportion of its population in the age range 25–34 than the rest of England. This is particularly the case for Inner London for which it makes up 24% of the population. It makes up 16% of the Outer London population and 13% of the rest of England population. London also has a higher proportion of children under the age of 5 than the rest of England.

London has a lower proportion of people in all age groups from 45 and above in comparison to the rest of England. The difference starts small at just half a percentage point in the 45 – 49 age group but then increases in each age group to a peak of 2.3 percentage points for 65 – 69 year olds. It then slowly decreases again to just 1 percentage point for those aged…