Like what you've read?

On Line Opinion is the only Australian site where you get all sides of the story. We don't
charge, but we need your support. Here�s how you can help.

  • Advertise

    We have a monthly audience of 70,000 and advertising packages from $200 a month.

  • Volunteer

    We always need commissioning editors and sub-editors.

  • Contribute

    Got something to say? Submit an essay.

 The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
On Line Opinion logo ON LINE OPINION - Australia's e-journal of social and political debate


On Line Opinion is a not-for-profit publication and relies on the generosity of its sponsors, editors and contributors. If you would like to help, contact us.


RSS 2.0

Beware the wounded senior

By Graham Young - posted Thursday, 14 March 2019

Retirement income and savings policies could be deciding factors in this coming federal election.

That is one of the conclusions of our latest What the people want, polling report. Download the report by clicking here.

Forty-eight per cent of the seats in parliament have a median voter age of 50 years or older. Twenty-five of those seats can be classified as marginal, with 10 held by the Liberal Party, 10 by the ALP and five by the Nationals. On the AEC definition, there are 47 marginal seats in Australia.


At the age of 50, men can ­expect to live to 83.1 years, and women to 86.1. Make it to 65 and life expectancy increases to 85.1 and 87.5.

That’s about 20 years living off your savings, which makes for a risk-averse cohort for whom ­adverse changes to rules around retirement and savings can mean a wasted lifetime of misdirected ­labour and financial strategy.

Who do Australians trust when it comes to savings? According to a poll of our virtual focus group by the Australian Institute for Progress, it is the Coalition by 45 per cent to 33 per cent against Labor.

Factors favouring the Coalition are perceptions of superior economic management, including being business friendly and tending towards lower taxes.

The ALP has damaged itself with its franking credits policy but gets marks for being the party that introduced compulsory superannuation and championed the banking inquiry.

Fifty per cent of Australians ­expect to be comfortable in retirement. Only 25 per cent thought they would be uncomfortable.


Indeed, many of our respondents were already retired and reported they either had enough savings, or that the pension was sufficient to their needs.

Others expressed concern they would have to modify their lifestyle or that factors beyond their control, such as low income, ill-health, or gender, were interfering with their ability to save.

The groups most worried about their retirement were One ­Nation/Australian Conservatives voters and minor party supporters.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. All

This article was first published in The Australian.

Discuss in our Forums

See what other readers are saying about this article!

Click here to read & post comments.

6 posts so far.

Share this:
reddit this reddit thisbookmark with Del.icio.usdigg thisseed newsvineSeed NewsvineStumbleUpon StumbleUponsubmit to propellerkwoff it

About the Author

Graham Young is chief editor and the publisher of On Line Opinion. He is executive director of the Australian Institute for Progress, an Australian think tank based in Brisbane, and the publisher of On Line Opinion.

Other articles by this Author

All articles by Graham Young

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Photo of Graham Young
Article Tools
Comment 6 comments
Print Printable version
Subscribe Subscribe
Email Email a friend

About Us Search Discuss Feedback Legals Privacy