|Title:||United States survey percentages of Baby Boom Generation Americans regarding the amount of time they have spend during the last six months obtaining information on/planning for retirement including monthly income expected in 2011|
|Source:||Senior Market Advisor|
Start of full article - but without data
Time spent over past six months gathering
information or planning for retirement
X hours XX% X to X hours XX% XX to XX hours XX% XX to XX hours XX% XX hours or more XX%
Percent of monthly income expected from guaranteed
monthly pension (Social Security, defined benefit, annuity)
X% X% X% to XX% XX% XX% to XX% XX% XX% to XX% XX% XX% to XX% XX% XXX% XX% Don't know X%
SOURCE: METLIFE STUDY "THINKING ABOUT
RETIREMENT IN UNCERTAIN TIMES," FEB. 2011
Note: Table made from bar graph.
Yes, the boomers are coming. In fact, millions have already punched their retirement ticket and millions more would have followed if not for the messy financial meltdown of 2008 which shrank their savings and kept them working longer than they would have liked.
The market swoon not only hamstrung the boomers financially, it also, at least to some degree, reshaped their personalities, according to separate boomer studies from Allianz Life and MetLife Mature Market Institute.
Before 2008 we thought we knew the boomers. They were easy to categorize. They were the resilient, fly-by-the-seat-of-their-pants risk takers, who'd get knocked down and get up. They could go belly up in that scheme to build a water park in Arizona and they'd dust themselves off and head back to the savings and loan for the next wide-eyed financial adventure.
They were the optimistic types who grew up as the first wave of television watchers, having their fertile minds shaped by heroic westerns where the good guy won out over insurmountable odds. And, where dads like Ward Cleaver or Mike Brady always had a gentle smile and fatherly advice that could help them overcome any childhood trauma that appeared onscreen during those halcyon days.
Yeah, those were our boomers. We loved those guys and gals. So easy to put in their neat little corners, they were a market researcher's dream. They were finally getting comfortable, a little too comfortable, when 2008 swept in. And we learned something: Maybe we didn't know the boomers anymore. Not like we thought we did ...
"Baby boomers are the largest generation to date.
They may also be the most affluent generation heading into retirement. "Baby boomers control XX% of the total net worth of American households--$X trillion of wealth." Leading-edge boomers, XX-XX years old, are now the most powerful of all consumer groups and the most relevant to the retirement community."
SOURCE: LIFECONNECT BOOMER RESEARCH: BABY BOOMER MAGAZINE
The new retirement: an expansion of the middle years
I think it's incumbent on us to help bring the message forward to consumers that it's not about increasing the later years of your life, it's really about understanding that what we're experiencing is an expansion of the middle years of your life and what that means to you when you "retire," which may not be just walking away from the job you have today. It may be that you envision a new role for yourself, whether that's volunteering or working at a nonprofit or even if it means starting your own business.
The key is to understand that there's an expansion of the middle years taking place that now includes from ages XX to XX because many of us realize we're not going to be able to retire completely at age XX like the greatest generation did. And I think there's a huge opportunity for financial advisors to help people articulate that "new retirement" for themselves, to help them understand it and help them create financial plans that help people develop a new direction in their lives.
LORI BITTER, PRESIDENT OF CONTINUUM CREW, AN INTEGRATED COMMUNICATIONS FIRM FOCUSED ON ENGAGING MATURE CONSUMERS.
The XX million-strong generation born between XXXX and 1964 has clung tenaciously to its youth. Now boomers are getting nervous about retirement. Only XX% say they are strongly convinced they will be able to live in comfort.
A total of XX% say they are fairly certain they will retire with financial security. But another XX% have little or no faith they'll have enough money when their careers end.
SOURCE: AP-LIFEGOESSTRONG.COM POLL, MARCH X-XX BY KNOWLEDGE WORKS OF MENLO PARK, CALIF.
Boomers on Annuities
Katie Libbe, vice president of consumer marketing and solutions for Allianz Life, helped develop Allianz' "Reclaiming the Future" study that polled some X,XXX Americans who fall into the boomer demographic. The common perception is that boomers are allergic to safe products. We asked Libbe if this was an accurate description and what her study revealed about boomers and products such as annuities. "Regarding annuities, there were positives and negatives to take from the study."
Consumers ranked annuities second highest in satisfaction among all financial instruments, beating out mutual funds at XX percent, stocks at XX percent, U.S. Savings Bonds at XX percent and CDs at XX percent. Gold and precious metals came in first, with a satisfaction rating of XX percent.
The study asked consumers to consider the features that would be most important to them if they could build the ideal financial product. The most-selected feature was "the ability to create a stable, predictable standard of living throughout retirement." In second and third place, respectively, were the "ability to provide a guaranteed income stream for life" and "guaranteed not to lose value."
When asked to choose between high returns or guarantees, XX percent of those surveyed said they'd prefer a product that was "guaranteed not to lose value," while only XX percent chose a product whose goal was "providing a high return."
Annuities are shrouded in misperceptions. The study showed that a surprising XX percent of the respondents expressed distaste for the word "annuity"--even after describing an annuity-like product as their ideal financial vehicle.
Twenty-five percent of the respondents formed their opinion of annuities more than XX years ago. Another XX percent of respondents said they formed their opinion between XX and XX years ago. Of those respondents, XX percent percent admit that they haven't researched annuities in the years since.
Another XX percent say they've considered annuities "once in a while," and only X percent say they've kept up with new product developments.
An overwhelming XX% of the people surveyed preferred a product with X percent return and a guarantee against losing value over a product with X percent return and a vulnerability to market downturns.
Boomers do not consider themselves "seniors"; therefore, terminology and language use is important. Boomers also regard themselves as savvy; hence, it is advisable to listen closely and treat their comments as unique and insightful. ~ Thomas K. Blomain
The X Boomer Financial Personalities
Based on its survey of more that X,XXX Americans, Allianz Life has identified five distinct boomer financial personalities, each with different needs as they approach retirement. Consumer segments were identified based on attitudinal, behavioral, psychographic and demographic characteristics. Five distinct financial personalities emerged as the respondents' demographic data were analyzed and correlated with their responses about economic resilience, concerns, attitudes and financial needs.
"Financially speaking, I'm pretty much in survival mode."
AGE: Late XXs to early XXs