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British pensioners in France and Spain face more struggle as pound slides to two-year low

The Local France
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British pensioners in France and Spain face more struggle as pound slides to two-year low
Photo:Susan Sermoneta/flickr

As the British pound continues its fall against the Euro many headlines have focused on holidaymakers getting less spending money - but for people in France and Spain with an income from the UK, the situation is a lot more serious.


While it is undoubtedly annoying when your hard-earned holiday money doesn't buy you as many euros as you had hoped, for many people currency fluctuations are a lot more serious.

Many British people in France and Spain are living on incomes that come from the UK, many of them on a private or state pension.

Some people also live in Europe and work remotely for a British company - meaning they get paid in pounds - while others receive income from rental properties or dividends from businesses or investments.

So a fluctuation in the exchange rate suddenly means less to spend.

And when the pound hits a two-year low as it did on Wednesday, the losses can be significant.

At 12 noon on Wednesday, the pound was trading at €1.09. That means that anyone who is on a fixed monthly income of £1,200 from the UK will now be getting €1,308 per month, compared to €1,548 at the start of June 2016 (before the Brexit referendum). Back in 1999, the same amount would have got you €1,800.

A loss of €240 a month is certainly significant and will hit many people hard, particularly pensioners who are often on low incomes anyway.

Speaking to The Local just after the referendum result in 2016, when the pound initially crashed Debbie Coxon, 62, who lives in central France's Creuse department said the steep drop in the pound meant having to use their savings to pay the bills.

And in yet more bad news economists are not predicting any any strong rallies, saying that ongoing political uncertainty is likely to weaken the pound for some tile.

"We see more British pound weakness to come. The current Sterling meltdown is in line with our view that risks are heavily skewed to the downside given the Brexit uncertainty and rising odds of an early election (our base case)," Petr Krpata, a foreign exchange analyst with ING Bank, told the British press.

We want to hear from British people living in France and Spain on how the currency slide has affected them, so please take a minute to share your experiences below.




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