Plan Adviser - Americans Lacking Confidence in Retirement Savings - June 26, 2017 - Javier Simon


 Americans Lacking Confidence in Retirement Savings

A new report by the Spectrem Group finds that several Americans lack confidence in saving properly for retirement, with the most concerned belonging to the Baby Boomer generation. 


Even though the U.S. is experiencing a nearly eight-year strong bull market, which has seen financial markets climb in value by more than 300%, a large portion of investors worry about saving enough for retirement. That’s the conclusion drawn from a recent survey by Spectrem Group.

The firm’s study “Financial Behaviors and the Participant’s Mindset” found that 43% of respondents say they expect to have less than $500,000 saved for retirement. Only 20% think they’ll put away $1 million to $2 million, and just 5% think they’ll have more than $5 million saved.

The majority of Millennials, however, are confident about their potential nest eggs. The survey found that more than half (60%) anticipate saving between $500,000 and $1 million.

Still, some research suggests that Millennials are overly hopeful about retirement. On the other hand, those closest to retirement appear the least confident about generating enough income in that phase. According to the report, more than half (56%) of Baby Boomers expect to have less than $500,000 in retirement. When adding in World War II-era investors, the figure jumps to 91%.

The reasons why participants are generally pessimistic about retirement savings are varied. Such reasons range from concerns over market volatility and current tax pressure to increasing health care costs. The firm found that 71% of respondents believe they pay too much in taxes. And while 75% think wealthier citizens should have the larger tax burden, 46% say they would like to see a flat tax rate levied on all citizens.

Managing health care costs in the future, however, seems to be the biggest obstacle to retirement saving. More than half (74%) believe this is a major issue.

To address that issue, plan sponsors and providers have been turning to integrating retirement planning and health care planning by utilizing different resources such as health savings accounts (HSAs).

Plan participants concerned about health care costs also worry about depleting their retirement savings. Less than half (48%) worry about paying too much in taxes or spending too much once they retire, the report says.

Information about downloading the full report can be found on