Tag Archives: pounds

Drivers set to save billions of pounds on car insurance after landmark ruling

“It is likely that firms will no longer offer unsustainably low-priced deals to some customers.

“However, the FCA estimates that these measures will save consumers £4.2bn over 10 years, by removing the loyalty penalty and making the market work better.”

The new rules will also make it easier for consumers to cancel automatic renewals of their policies and force insurance firms to do more to consider how they offer fair value to customers.

Sheldon Mills, executive director for consumers and competition at the FCA, said: “These measures will put an end to the very high prices paid by many loyal customers.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Life and Style Feed
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'A lot of work needs to be done' Women risk getting thousands of pounds less in retirement

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Finance Feed

Unless something is done to tackle the issue, millions of people risk ending up thousands of pounds worse off than their male counterparts, according to research by Profile Pensions. Analysis of the pensions expert’s own data from more than 20,000 customers aged 22 to 66 shows the gender pension gap is widest in Northern Scotland.
It’s here that men’s pension pots are almost 50 percent greater than women’s.

On average, men in Northern Scotland have an average pension value of £41,603.

This is nearly double the size of the average pension value for women standing at £20,978.

The gap is also very wide in East Anglia – where the average male pension value is £45,429.

Meanwhile, the average pension value for women is 49 percent less, at £23,391.

READ MORE: Virgin Money is offering Britons a 2% interest rate with account which ‘keeps on giving’

Greater London is the region featuring the lowest gender pension gap, where the average female pension pot is 30 percent higher than the female national average.

That said, London is where the greatest pension wealth is held, with men having, on average, £9,000 more in their pension pot.

Michelle Gribbin, Chief Investment Officer at Profile Pensions, said: “What we see with these findings, sadly, is that the gender pay gap and the gender pension gap go hand in hand.

“Men, on average, earn more than women, and therefore can save and receive larger contributions from employers into their pension pot.

“It’s clear there’s much more to be done to help women gain the security they need going into retirement.

“Under current UK law, employers contribute three percent to the employee’s pension pot, four percent comes direct from their payroll and the remaining one percent is made up by tax relief.

“Employees are able to decrease or increase this anytime that they see fit.”

Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, Ms Gribbin said: “This research makes us realise how much work needs doing around equality, the gender pay gap and the pension pay gap.

“The pension pay gap is due to majority of higher paid roles held by men, and contributing a correspondingly smaller amount into their own pension pot.”

She added: “A lot of work needs to be done to ensure that the gender pay gap is closed, giving women across the UK the security they need for when their time comes to retire.”

So, what does Profile Pensions suggest for those hoping to reduce the impact of individuals being affected by the gender pension gap?

Samantha Packham, pension adviser at Profile Pensions, said joining a workplace pension as soon as possible is her top tip.

“Don’t wait to be invited – if you don’t ask, you don’t get,” she told Express.co.uk.

“Now that the auto enrolment schemes are up and running, no one can deny that employers play a big part in helping to build our retirement pots.

“The normal age that an employee is invited to join their work place pension is 22.

“However, the vast majority of employees are entitled to opt into their workplace from 18.

“By asking to join the workplace pension earlier than the default age of 22, not only will workers benefit from the money they pay in, they will receive employer contributions and tax relief as well, which effectively doubles up the contributions.

“By opting in at the age of 18 instead of 22, that’s four extra years of ‘free money’ from your employers.

“As with most things in life, if you don’t ask, you don’t get.”

Beefed-up Jon Jones pounds treadmill at 20mph as UFC star warns Ngannou

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

Money might still be a sticking point but Jon Jones is apparently not giving up on his ambitions to face UFC heavyweight king Francis Ngannou, pledging to take down the giant Cameroonian and bring the belt back to America.

Jones and UFC boss Dana White have been engaged in a high-stakes blinking contest over the terms of a superfight between the light heavyweight legend and human wrecking ball Ngannou, ever since the latter was crowned heavyweight champion with a typically destructive KO victory over Stipe Miocic last month.

Jones has demanded that the UFC “show him the money” in a concerted campaign in which the 33-year-old has accused his paymasters of short-changing him down the years.

Dana White, meanwhile, has claimed that Jones requested a minimum of $ 30 million to meet Ngannou in the octagon – something the fighter himself has laughed off as lies.

Also on rt.com UFC legend Jones fires back at Dana White over claims of ‘$ 30 million purse demands’ for Ngannou superfight

With the talks seemingly at an impasse, Jones is nonetheless continuing his efforts to bulk up and make the step to heavyweight.

Showcasing a burst of speed to accompany his burlier new frame, Jones shared footage on his social media accounts of himself hitting a treadmill at 20mph (32 kph).

“250lbs sprinting 20mph,” Jones wrote in the text accompanying the clip.

Jones has not been shy to showcase his bulked-up physique as he chases a big-money showdown with the heavy-hitting Ngannou.

For his part, the Cameroonian powerhouse has stoked talk of a fight in recent days by claiming he would “take care of” Jones before shifting his attentions to the boxing world and WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury.

That came as Ngannou, 34, proudly displayed the fruits of his labor with a tour of his homeland, where he was mobbed by adoring fans.

Also on rt.com Francis Ngannou mobbed on return to Cameroon as UFC heavyweight king hands belt to his mom amid wild scenes on streets (VIDEO)

Jones, though, was having none of it.

“Ran through the light heavyweight division on talent, about to run through the heavyweight division like dominoes off pure hard work,” the former longtime light heavyweight ruler wrote.

“The greatest title in the world is coming back to the greatest country in the world…

“If you think you are going to run through America, you are wrong.”

Jones is yet to be handed a legitimate loss in 28 professional MMA contests, and still sits atop the UFC’s pound-for-pound rankings despite his ugly pay wrangle with White and not having fought since he defeated Dominick Reyes by unanimous decision more than 12 months ago.

White has said that he is targeting heavyweight veteran Derrick Lewis as the next opponent for Ngannou, rather than Jones.

Ngannou and Lewis have fought once already, putting on a dire display for fans at UFC 226 in July 2018 – a fight which Lewis won via decision.

‘The Black Beast’ lost his one previous title shot against Daniel Cormier later that year, but has put himself back into contention with a series of four wins on the spin.

For fans though, the match-up to make is clearly Ngannou versus Jones – and the fighters themselves seem just as committed to making it happen.

Also on rt.com ‘Jon Jones moved up to heavyweight because he knows he’d lose to me!’ UFC champ Jan Blachowicz to RT Sport (VIDEO)

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How to live longer: Losing a few pounds of weight will increase expectancy and reduce risk

The importance in living a long and healthy life has become insurmountable since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out and finding ways to help boost our health and longevity has never been more pertinent. So much so that Prime Minister Boris Johnson is launching a campaign to help Brits live longer. When it comes to the number one way you can help boost your longevity, losing weight is key.

Being overweight is linked to many health problems, and shedding some pounds is often presented as the best way to avoid them, no matter your age.

Researchers found the association between weight gain and mortality weakens as you get older and losing weight in middle age or late adulthood may heighten the risk of premature death, particularly when it comes to heart disease.

Weight gain from mid-20s into middle age was associated with increased risk of mortality when compared to people who remained at normal weight throughout their life.

However, weight loss in middle and older age is significantly related to increased mortality risk.

READ MORE: Hair loss treatment: Mangrove tree extract shown to reverse baldness and promote growth

Obese or even merely overweight people who can shed just three percent of their weight and keep it off for the long-term will see significant health benefits from lowering their risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, as well as some cancers.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) acknowledges the difficulties many people face while losing weight and maintaining the loss.

Men who are obese are estimated to be around five times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes and 2.5 times more likely to develop high blood pressure.

Women who are obese are estimated to be around 13 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes and four times more likely to develop high blood pressure than women who are not.

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In a study published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes for Health, obesity and the related consequences to ageing was analysed.

Obesity has become a major public health problem, noted the study.

It continued: “Given the current increase in life expectancy, the prevalence of obesity also raises steadily among older age groups.

“The increase in life expectancy is often accompanied with additional years of susceptibility to chronic ill health associated with obesity in the elderly.

“Data on age-related changes in obesity has led some researchers to postulate that obesity could be considered as a condition of premature metabolic dysfunction resembling ageing.

“Obesity is commonly associated with increased susceptibility to health problems, thereby becoming a leading cause of preventable death.”

“Covid-19 has demonstrated the importance of physical health in our ability to tackle such illnesses, and we must continue to help people to lead healthy lives so we can all better prevent and fight illnesses.”

Mr Johnson himself has turned his health around after contracting COVID-19 last year.

Experts believe his weight played a significant factor in the severity of his illness after being hospitalised for a week.

Since then, he has made positive changes to his overall health and has since embarked on a gruelling daily fitness regime and employed personal trainer Harry Jameson.

Mr Johnson said yesterday: “The new Office for Health Promotion will be crucial in tackling the causes, not just the symptoms, of poor health and improving prevention of illnesses.

“Covid-19 has demonstrated the importance of physical health in our ability to tackle such illnesses, and we must continue to help people to lead healthy lives so we can all better prevent and fight illnesses.”

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How Much Weight Did We Gain During Lockdowns? 2 Pounds a Month, Study Hints

Soon after the pandemic started over a year ago, Americans started joking about the dreaded “quarantine 15,” worried they might gain weight while shut in homes with stockpiles of food, glued to computer screens and binge-watching Netflix.

The concern is real, but assessing the problem’s scope has been a challenge. Surveys that simply ask people about their weight are notoriously unreliable, and many medical visits have been virtual.

Now a very small study using objective measures — weight measurements from Bluetooth-connected smart scales — suggests that adults under shelter-in-place orders gained more than half a pound every 10 days[1].

That translates to nearly two pounds a month, said Dr. Gregory M. Marcus, senior author of the research letter, published on Monday in the peer-reviewed JAMA Network Open. Americans who kept up their lockdown habits could easily have gained 20 pounds over the course of a year, he added.

“We know that weight gain is a public health problem in the U.S. already, so anything making it worse is definitely concerning, and shelter-in-place orders are so ubiquitous that the sheer number of people affected by this makes it extremely relevant,” said Dr. Marcus, a cardiologist and professor of medicine at University of California, San Francisco.

While it is almost impossible to make generalizations based on the study — which included fewer than 300 people scattered across the United States — all participants were tracking their weight regularly.

Many of these people were losing weight before shelter-in-place orders were issued in their states, Dr. Marcus noted. “It’s reasonable to assume these individuals are more engaged with their health in general, and more disciplined and on top of things,” he said. “That suggests we could be underestimating — that this is the tip of the iceberg.”

Excess weight has been linked to a greater risk of developing more severe Covid-19 disease, and the United States already has among the highest rates of overweight and obesity in the world. Some 42 percent of American adults over age 20 have obesity, as defined by body mass index, while another 32 percent of Americans are simply overweight.

The risk of severe illness has been documented among young adults who are overweight or obese, as well. Many states are prioritizing people who are overweight or obese for vaccination, along with those who have other chronic conditions like diabetes or hypertension.

The new study analyzed data obtained from 269 participants who were involved in an ongoing cardiology study, the Health eHeart Study. They volunteered to report weight measurements from Bluetooth-connected smart scales and weighed themselves regularly; the researchers gathered 7,444 weight measurements over a four-month period, an average of 28 weight measurements from each participant.

The group was not nationally representative, by any means, so the results are not generalizable: About three-quarters were white, and just 3.5 percent identified as Black or African-American; about 3 percent identified as Asian-American. The average age was 51, and they were split almost evenly among men and women.

The participants were from 37 states and the District of Columbia. The researchers analyzed weight measurements taken between Feb. 1, 2020, and June 1, 2020, in order to look at weight changes both before and after shelter-in-place orders were issued for each state.

While the participants mostly had been losing pounds before the orders were issued, their weights rose steadily at a rate of about six-tenths of a pound every 10 days after the orders were issued, regardless of where they were in the country and regardless of chronic medical conditions.

The lockdowns have certainly had an effect on dietary patterns, on what people eat and how often they eat. But the restrictions also curtailed the humdrum physical activity that is part and parcel of daily living[2], the researchers said.

“If you think about people commuting, even running to the subway or bus stop, or stepping in at the post office to mail a letter, or stopping at the store — we burn a lot of calories in non-exercise activities of daily living,” said Leanne Redman, a professor of clinical physiology at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, part of Louisiana State University.

Her research had found that people were eating a healthier diet during the initial days of the shutdown but were more sedentary.

An earlier study by U.C.S.F. researchers looked at daily step counts, as tracked by smartphones, among nearly half a million people in nearly 200 countries. The number of steps people took[3] declined by 27 percent a month after the World Health Organization declared the pandemic.

The concern about exercise also extends to children, who are known to pack on unhealthy pounds during the summer recess months when they are not in school. The risk is even greater for Hispanic and Black children than for white children, said Andrew G. Rundle, an associate professor of epidemiology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, author of a recent paper that expressed concern that school closings would exacerbate[4] existing racial health disparities.

“We argued that being out of school, which we thought would go on for six months and has gone on longer, was going to be like the summer recess but even worse, because everyone would be loading up on shelf-stable calorie-laden food, and staying indoors and not going out,” he said. “Everything that makes the summer dangerous for kids would be magnified by the lockdown.”

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Martin Lewis explains car insurance 'trick' which could save drivers hundreds of pounds

Martin Lewis said renewing up to three weeks before would see drivers secure lower prices but costs would be at their lowest at exactly 21 days. He said the simple trick was “amazing” and urged all road users to make sure they check it out before settling elsewhere.
Compare the Market confirmed drivers were likely to save the most money on car insurance agreements by switching three weeks before the cover will end.

They say drivers between the ages of 25 and 29 could save an average of £443 by switching 21 days before their renewal.

Meanwhile, drivers aged between 30 and 39 were likely to save £367 renewing 21 days early with those between 40 and 49 saving £289 on cover.

Confused.com also confirmed premiums are usually at their cheapest between 21 and 30 days before a policy expires.

Speaking back in February, Mr Lewis said prices were cheaper three weeks before based simply on a company’s overall perceived risk.

He said drivers who leave it to the last minute will be considered “a more risky person” which could make someone more likely to claim on an agreement.

He said: “This is not about your renewal price, it’s the cheapest price you’ll get on a comparison on the days before you renew.

“If you try and get a quote 30 days before the price is pretty high then it drops very rapidly.

The sweet spot is around 21 days but anything three or four weeks.

“Then it starts to go up and up and up until we are talking about renewing at the last moment which is nearly twice the cost.

“You’re saying ‘that makes no sense’, well, there is a reason.

“Insurance pricing is based on risk and if you are the type of person who leaves it to the last minute their risk charts show you’re a more risky person so they will charge you more.

“So play their risk odds against them and renew earlier in that sweet spot of three to four weeks and you can save money.”