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News Bites | Middle-income Boomers prepare for retirement

August 30, 2011

News Bites is an occasional column in NICSA News that collects memorable facts, quotes and insights from our recent reading.

This edition of News Bites looks at recent surveys from the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) and the Center for a Secure Retirement (CSR). Both focus on middle-income Baby Boomers and their retirement planning. These were our takeaways:

1. The middle class makes up 60% of the U.S. population and earns 47% of total income. Those in the broad middle are likely to own homes (70%) and have health insurance coverage (75%+). (IRI)

2. When it comes to retirement planning, middle-income Boomers are particularly interested in security. This group owns 73% of all annuities, and the majority (60%) envy the retirement security enjoyed by prior generations. (CSR) Principal protection and steady income are key investment goals. Here’s a quick look at their top responses when asked to name the most important traits of retirement investing by IRI:

3. For most, finances will determine when they retire. (CSR) And how will they fund retirement? Roughly 3 in 4 say that they’ll continue to work. (CSR) Outside of employment, they’ll draw on Social Security and employer-provided retirement plans. Only 1 in 5 expect personal investments to play a major role (IRI) — but that’s probably because savings levels are modest.

And — Baby Boomers are increasingly likely to be caring for their parents, according to a recent MetLife survey. It’s estimated these caregivers will lose nearly $3 trillion in wages, pension, and Social Security benefits because of their responsibilities at home — making planning for retirement that much tougher.

Links to the surveys discussed in this post:

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