Retirement savings: Too little too late?

Posted: May 6, 2012 at 6:17 am

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LONDON A new survey by Prudential says people in the UK who want to retire this year are looking forward to traveling the world (36 percent) or enjoying themselves (43 percent). Only 5 percent plan to spend anything on charity.

But the top priority seems to be a prerequisite for their dreams: "Prudential has revealed the results of new research which shows the top priority for people intending to retire this year is saving money to ensure they have enough to live on in retirement. Nearly 6 out of 10 people (57 percent) said saving will be a top priority," the press release said.

"Today's retirees are likely to spend longer in retirement than previous generations," Vince Smith-Hughes, retirement income expert at Prudential, said in the survey press release, "so it is encouraging to see that they understand the importance of saving money to ensure they can live comfortably. Saving shouldn't be regarded as something that suddenly stops once you retire, and the current generation of retirees seems to be more aware of this than ever before."

But for many in the U.S., retirement may just be a pipe dream.

CNN Money featured an article titled "Delaying retirement: 80 is the new 65." About a quarter of middle-class Americans have so little savings that they are planning to delay their retirement until they are at least 80 years old.

Eighty years old is two years longer than average life expectancy meaning that many people are working to save enough money to die some day.

"It sounds depressing, but for many it's a necessity," the CNN article said. "On average, Americans have only saved a mere 7 percent of the retirement nest egg they were hoping to build, according to Wells Fargo's latest retirement survey that polled 1,500 middle-class Americans."

People had a median savings of about $25,000. Their median goal was $350,000.

Clive Crook, a Bloomberg View columnist, said Americans' problem is not Social Security solvency, but that it won't be enough to retire on. "When they retire, many baby boomers will see a far bigger drop in their standard of living than they had expected," he said. "Many will have to work longer, whether they want to or not."

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Retirement savings: Too little too late?

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May 6th, 2012 at 6:17 am

Posted in Retirement