A think-tank impacting policy on longevity, ageing
and population change
The Golden Economy – The Consumer Marketplace in an Ageing Society
This new research, by David Sinclair of ILC-UK, for Age UK, considers the market potential of the older consumer and highlights how companies can make more of this population...
The consumer market is important to older people, providing (and influencing) the food we eat and the medications we take. The private sector help us fill our leisure time and support our learning and personal development.
At the same time. older people are important to the market and the economy. Older people’s spending reached an estimated £97 billion in 2008 (65 plus)‚ around 15 per cent of the overall household expenditure. Those aged 50 or over spent £276 billion in 2008‚ making up around 44 per cent of the total family spending in the UK.
Yet despite the size of the market, this report finds that for many, the private sector does not meet their needs. This is not just a story of poverty or a lack of income to buy products, but of a consumer marketplace which frequently fails to meet the needs of an ageing population. People of all income levels are consumers. For the poorest consumer, they often find that they pay more and get less back in return.
Some older people are well served by the market. And in some cases older people get fantastic service from the private sector. Yet there are significant issues facing the older consumer. Many of the issues highlighted below have been documented in literature as far back as the 1960s. Some of the failings outlined in this report are indicative of market failure.