2013: Yes, There is a Retirement Crisis
If there was a theme to the year, it was the recognition that there is a brewing retirement crisis and that we need to do something about it as a society and as individuals. The numbers here bear that out and give us a sense of the problems to be solved.
- $6.6 trillion: That’s what the Center for Retirement Research has estimated as the gap between what people will need in retirement and what they have saved.
- 20 years: A generation ago, when most of the current retirement system was created, life expectancy at 65 was 5 to 7 years. Today, it’s closer to 20 years, meaning if you retire at age 65, retirements are three times as long.
- 65%: Building on the last point, a couple at age 65 has a 65% chance of one of them reaching their 90th birthday.
- 50%: Only 50% of investors understand how much they will need in retirement, according to BlackRock’s Investor Pulse survey.
2014: It’s Your Number That Counts
Here’s one more number: 77% of 401(k) plan participants would save more if they knew how much they needed to save to generate retirement income, according to the 2013 BlackRock Retirement Survey. That’s cause for optimism; clarity drives action.
You can’t solve the retirement crisis. But you can solve, prevent or mitigate your retirement crisis. Here are three small steps you can take in 2014: