A Wrinkle in the Process: Financial Inclusion Barriers in an Ageing Europe – Report

08 April 2021


A groundbreaking look at vulnerability among older people in the European Union and the barriers they face that limit their access to basic, mainstream-market financial services and products appropriate to their needs in their communities.

  • The report reaffirms the importance of older people needing access to a basic package of financial tools and services that enable them to lead a normal social life in the society in which they belong. That package includes cash, a payments account, savings account, a safe third-pillar pension product, motor insurance, health insurance, home insurance and personal liability insurance.
  • Age limits, digitalisation and poverty or low income present the main barriers impacting the access of older people to a defined basic package of financial tools and services. The green and digital transition, as well as the responses to the Covid-19 crisis, risk exacerbating these barriers even further if low consciousness on these barriers remains. When constructing equitable solutions, awareness of the intersectional vulnerabilities faced by individuals – for example as older women or immigrants – within their local context is vital.
  • The study provides a product-specific list of barriers and ways to lower them. Mitigation of barriers to inclusion are essential not only in maintaining the autonomy, inclusion and well-being of older people, but absolutely necessary for realising the goals laid out by the European Pillar of Social Rights and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS). They also raise the importance of bolstering the rights of older people and those affected by disabilities through a full implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

Download the report