Group of European Pensioners from Savings Banks and Financial Institutions


Index of documents > Euromeetings Magazine > Euromeetings Number 6



The economy of the group improves with the entrance in the system of new groups of pensioners who have a higher number of points, depending on their years of service and their salaries. This does not mean that the economic situation has improved for those have been receiving a pension for many years, because when they retired they had a lower number of points.


In the covenanted pension system that complements state pensions, the increase of the amount depends on the inflation level. This means that retired people have received very little during these last couple of years of low inflation, especially in comparison with the increase of the purchasing power of the active class. The pension system does not adapt to modern consumption, because nowadays cellular phones or personal computers, among other things, are almost necessary. Many retired people, therefore, have difficulties in our modern consumer society.


If we compared the pension, including economic support, and excluding taxes, of a person whose income was low with the pension of another who had a very high income, the difference would be very small. State retirement does not offer great benefits, in spite of the number of working years.


There is, however, a covenanted pension that is important to the income level when the retired person has worked for a company which has a good collective agreement or any kind of agreement on pensions.


Today in Sweden, a new pension system has been established to make the total income earned during years of service more important when calculating the income for retired people. This new system will level differences because of the establishment of housing aids in order to complement low pensions.





As a result of the aids granted during these last years, pensioners with low income have been able to increase their purchasing power. Meanwhile, pensioners with high income have hardly maintained theirs.


In these last 30 years, the evolution is very noticeable. A person with only a basic state pension has seen his/her economy grow, mainly because of housing aids, because housing expenses do not keep pace with income. However, pensioners who own some property have seen their incomes decrease, because they are not allowed to receive any state aid, even if their pensions are low.





In general, retired people save more than the active class, and also, unlike the rest of the population, they consider that saving is very important. Almost half the adult population of Sweden does not have savings over 15,000 crowns (about 1,017 €), the same amount, more or less, that one pays for changing the exhaust system in a car. But 36% of retired people have more than 100,000 crowns saved (6,670 €). The problem appears when their savings increase their personal assets, a fact that does not allow them to receive any state aid.


A very important matter today is the quality of service offered to pensioners. Home care, for those who still live in their own houses, has decreased because of cuts in the budget. Another question would be how much should be paid for institution care. Today, local institutions decide the fee to be paid in an institution. There is, however, a law project that wants to establish a maximum fee and, at the same time, the minimum amount that a pensioner must have left after paying his/her expenses to the institution. This means that people who have saved some money, in comparison with those who spent all their income while they were active, will not be left without resources. It seems a reasonable idea.




Ylra Yngresson

Swedbank - Sweden