Economics of Age

The Actuarial Profession, Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ, 16:30, 16 June 2009

A seminar on public spending and the potential effect of changes in life expectancy.

Considerable uncertainty surrounds projections of future life expectancy in the UK. A central set of assumptions produced by the Government Actuary's Department/ONS is often used in models to project future public expenditure on age-related areas such as pensions and long-term care. However, a number of alternative projections, and alternative methods of making projections, are available.

To date there has been little investigation of what would be the impact of changes in life expectancy projections on age-related public spending. As fiscal consolidation becomes the overarching objective of UK public policy, understanding the potential effect of changes in age-related public spending will be vital to mapping the scope and limits of public policy over the next decade.

The event explored:

  • What alternative methods of estimating life expectancy are available?
  • What would be the impact of variations in life expectancy projections on public spending projections for long-term care and the state pension?

The speakers at the event were:

  • Professor Mike Murphy, LSE
  • Raphael Wittenberg, Personal Social Services Research Unit, LSE
  • Chris Curry, Pensions Policy Institute