More than 1 million elderly citizens are threatened by poverty in Germany now than ten years ago, say social researchers / Photo: Femi Awoniyi

Germans increasingly afraid of being financially insecure in old age, says study

More and more Germans are worried about not being able to make ends meet when they retire, a new study has shown. Rising energy costs and low interest rates are also feeding fears of financial insecurity.

More than half of all Germans are afraid of being financially insecure in old age, German newspaper Die Welt has reported, citing a study from the Ernst & Young (EY) consulting company on consumer trust for 2019.

With a rapidly aging population, Germany’s pension system is under stress, and rising living costs, low interest rates, and the growth of the temporary and low-wage employment mean that many people face challenges to achieving financial security for their retirement.

“Many Germans no longer think that their pension is secure,” said Bernhard Lorentz, one of the study’s authors and the head of EY’s Government & Public Sector. “Politicians must take these worries seriously.”

A 2017 study by Germany’s Bertelsmann Foundation found that old-age poverty in Germany would increase from 16 percent in 2015 to 20 percent by 2036.

While fears of a present-day economic slowdown remained constant at 25 percent, 36 percent of Germans worried that their income would go down, a slight increase from 2017.

The study showed that dissatisfaction with one’s standard of living increased with age, with 1-in-3 Germans over the age of 65 unhappy with their financial situation.

In comparison, 61 percent of all Germans under the age of 35 believe that their financial situation will improve.

© DW

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