No longer updating

It's a shame, but I'm no longer updating this website. Busy setting up new ventures.

I'll leave it up for anyone who's interested.

Thanks to all regular readers, and all the best for the future.

Cheers, PJ

Youth money thoughts

Anyone can learn about money.

Anyone can help anyone else learn.

Making mistakes doesn't mean you're hopeless.

Managing money is a lot about relationships & understanding other people.

Good financial education is not about turning people into more savvy consumers.

Good financial education starts with young people's interests and builds on their strengths.

News, events, releases

Money and happiness

Data on how happiness relates to health and to where people live was released this week by the Office for National Statistics. This makes sense. Both affect people’s well-being.

What’s missing, though, is anything about how managing money underlies these and the other measures used to track happiness. Worth noting:

Managing money is a life-skill [...]

News, events, releases

No one is owed a living

David Cameron, speech on welfare

A speech today by Prime Minister David Cameron on welfare benefits has triggered concern for young people. While the proposals are vague and poorly-defined, they seem to signal an intent to reduce benefits for young people. For instance, they propose denying housing benefit to anyone under 25 – with the possible exception of care leavers [...]

News, events, releases

Young mother humiliated by BBC

Shanene on Newsnight

Shanene Thorpe, a young single parent, agreed to be interviewed for national television news about her life. She is proud of her child – “a beautiful, sociable and happy three-year-old girl”. She is also proud of the way she herself copes with the challenges of being a working mum. She lives in London and works [...]

News, events, releases

Young workers ask for more


The cost of living is rising for young people. Yet the minimum wage was frozen for workers under 21.

Young members of trade union Unison’s northern region argue this is unfair. They have launched an e-petition to get the topic of raising the rate for young workers debated in parliament.

The minimum wage is currently [...]

News, events, releases

Youth unemployment—then & now

Youth unemployment since 1992, provided by House of Commons library

What was unemployment like when you were a teenager? Or when someone advising you was your age? Here’s an at-a-glance graph of the past twenty years.

Youth unemployment since 1992, provided by House of Commons library

What is immediately noticeable is what a tough time today’s 16 and 17 year olds have. Those who [...]

News, events, releases

Minimum wage frozen

money image

The national minimum wage is be raised in October by 11p an hour. Not for most young people, though. The rates for 16-17 olds and for 18-20 year olds have been frozen. The apprenticeship rate is to go up 5p an hour.

From 1 October 2012 the rates will be:

£6.19 an hour – [...]

News, events, releases

Limits of jobs guarantee


The jobs guarantee for young people proposed by opposition leader Ed Miliband will not make much difference to most jobless young people, says influential analyst Jonathan Portes.

The proposal guarantees a job of 25 hours a week at the minimum wage to young people aged 18-24 who have been claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance for more than [...]

News, events, releases

Blaming numeracy doesn’t add up

Today’s revelations of low numeracy levels among adults are no surprise to those working with young people. Many report that financial education materials and ideas are pitched at a level far too high for most young people, especially those who are not in education, employment or training.

What does the reminder that 17 million adults [...]

News, events, releases

Bursary Fund “a disgrace” says Barnado’s


Barnado’s has condemned the replacement for Education Maintenance Allowance for causing severe hardship, leaving young people without the financial backup to support their everyday expenses. The charity interviewed 17 key staff and 51 of the disadvantaged young people it works with (and some of their friends) about the new Bursary Fund. It found evidence of [...]

News, events, releases

Compulsion not popular with money savers

Photo: Jarvin

Ed Balls Photo: Jarvin

The e-petition for compulsory financial education never did make much sense. It is not getting any better after promoter Martin Lewis claimed his latest champion. Lewis, founder of bargain-hunters’ website moneysaving expert, says 200 MPs have signed the petition. That’s getting on for a third of all MPs in the [...]