Australian pensioners living in poverty

A report released by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has confirmed what we already know – Australian pensioners don’t have enough money to live on.

Pensions at a Glance 2015 compared Australia to 33 other countries and found that it ranks second last when it comes to social equity. A whopping 36 per cent of pensioners live below the poverty line, which is defined in the report as being half of a country’s median household income. The OECD average is 12.6 per cent.

Of course, the findings won’t come as a surprise to those trying to live on the Age Pension. The Australian Government contributes less to pensioner benefits, just 3.5 per cent of GDP, than any other OECD country, with the average spent in such countries 7.9 per cent.

The findings mirror those of the Global Age Watch Index 2015, which ranks 96 countries in total and found that 33 per cent of Australians over 60 were living in poverty. 

The good news is though that Australia does do better than South Korea, with 50 per cent of pensioners there living below the poverty line.

Do you live below the poverty line? How much would the Age Pension have to rise by to meet the cost of living in retirement?

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Written by Debbie McTaggart



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