Now in my 60s, I am reminded daily of the global problem of saving for the era of post-formal employment. It assumes formal employment will continue to exist, because the regulatory framework is forcing employers to hire contractors only and not the traditional "lifer" company employees.

At the age of 18 I took out my first life insurance policy, which led to others. My father taught me the "one house policy" and to pay off debt as fast as you can, so by age 40 in a modest home we had no debt. However, that meant I had no pension, as the returns I was getting on company pension funds were so miserable after fees I bought unit trusts and bought equities. The balance paid off my bond.

I also learned from the disaster that faced Zimbabweans not to put all my eggs in one basket, and have at least half of the core assets outside one country.

Very few people have saved enough and most are not saving at all. Given the high unemployment rate, what prospects do citizens have of attaining financial freedom?

Andy Clay
Via e-mail

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