The majority of Generation X workers believe they'll need to
save a million bucks or more for retirement, and almost a third think they'll
need more than $2 million. But so far they only have about $70,000 in
retirement savings for their household, according to a report out Thursday from
the non-profit Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.
Most (83%) Gen Xers — those born between 1965 and 1978 — are
concerned that Social Security won't be there when they're ready to retire, and
the majority (85%) think they'll have a much harder time achieving financial
security than their parents did, says the report, which is based on a survey of
4,143 full-time and part-time workers, including 1,120 Generation Xers.
Only 14% are very confident they'll be able to retire one
day with a comfortable lifestyle, and about a third expect a lower standard of
living in retirement.
It is never too late to start saving for retirement — or to
begin saving even more. About 84% of Gen Xers who are offered a 401(k) or
similar plan participate in the plan at a median annual contribution rate of 7%
of their annual salary.
Other findings about
Gen X workers:
• 31% think they will need to save $2 million or more for
retirement; 25%, $1 million to $2 million; 20%, $500,000 to $1 million; 24%,
less than $500,000.
• 39% would rather not think about retirement investing
until they get closer to retirement.
• 54% plan to work past age 65 or don't plan to retire. Most
(62%) would like to ease into retirement by staying employed but work fewer
hours so they have more leisure time, or they would like to work in a less
demanding job that gives them greater personal satisfaction.
• Only 44% are working on keeping their job skills current;
18% are networking and meeting new folks; 17% are checking out the job market
• 61% have a retirement strategy, but only 14% have a
• 65% say they don't know as much as they should about
• 35% of those who are investing for retirement use a
• Take a close look at your finances. Do an
assessment of your retirement savings, assets and debts. Doing a smart budget
now may pay off in the future, she says.
• Calculate how much money you'll need for
retirement and make a plan. Write it down. Make sure you consider living
expenses, health care costs, long-term care, interests and hobbies
• Save aggressively. Participate in employer-sponsored retirement plans, if
offered, and take full advantage of employer contributions. Consider catch-up
contributions available for people age 50 and older.
• Learn all you can about retirement investing. Consider
seeing a professional financial adviser.
• Check into Social Security and other government benefits
such as Medicare
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