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The Difference Between The Best And Worst Pension Incomes Can Be Very Surprising

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Reduction in pension relief allowance will hit 340,000 high earners

The Chancellor’s decision to cut pension tax-breaks from £50,000 to £40,000 a year is set to hit tens of thousands of middle and high-income earners, experts warned.

George Osborne was accused of ‘beating many middle class savers with a stick’, with 160,000 a year set to be impacted by the cap.

The fall in lifetime pension relief allowance from £1.5m to £1.25m in 2014-15 will also act as a blow to some 340,000 workers.

Joanne Segars, chief executive of the National Association of Pension Funds, said that Mr Osborne was wrong to argue that the changes will only affect those at the top of the wage tree.

“Osborne claims he is taking a carrot away from the rich, but he is also beating many middle class savers with a stick. Middle managers in the public and private sectors will get caught in the net,” she said.

“People in a final salary pension who have worked loyally for the same employer for years and then get a pay rise, or a promotion, could end up with a tax bill of several thousand pounds.”

However, Dr Ros Altmann, director-general of Saga, said it was “understandable that the Chancellor has chosen to limit the amount spent on top earners’ pensions tax relief”.

The Chancellor argued that the average pension saver put in £6,000 a year, with just 1% putting away more than £40,000.
An individual saving for a defined contribution scheme in the private sector would have to be earning well over £200,000 to be affected.

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