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Boomers Express Their Financial Discontent in LifeHealthPro Report
Friday, May 6, 2016 6:40 AM

The fragility of boomers' financial condition is apparent in a range of questions posed by the Insured Retirement Institute. In an article on LifeHealthPro, authors of the study called "Boomer Expectations for Retirement," cite glaring evidence of the broad discontent among Americans about their financial circumstances.

The sentiment is notably strong among those at greatest risk to the vicissitudes of the economy and the markets because of their nearness to retirement—baby boomers.

In this 6th annual update on the group’s retirement preparedness, the report notes financial concerns among America’s 76-plus million boomers are significant and rising. A range of questions were posed by IRI, from whether the boomers will have to cover healthcare expenses in retirement to their ability to provide for surviving family members after their passing.

The trend line is clear in a core measure of the survey: economic satisfaction. As the study shows, this has dropped sharply since 2014. This year, just 43 percent of boomers say they’re happy with their lives from an economic vantage point, down from 65 percent in 2014 and 77 percent in 2013.

A key reason for the precipitous dip:  fewer boomers are confident in their future and in ability to manage their finances. These drivers of economic satisfaction, the report notes, have “fallen almost continuously” since IRI’s inaugural report on boomer retirement expectations in 2011.

Conversely, a growing number of boomers are planning to retire later. More than one in four boomers (26 percent) intend to leave the workforce at age 70 or later, up from 17 percent in 2011. A larger group (33 percent) plans to retire between the ages of 65 and 69, up from the 26 percent IRI reported in 2011 and 2012. Again, financial confidence—or lack thereof—underpins the trend.

"Confidence [among boomers] in having enough money to live comfortably throughout retirement, that they are doing a good job preparing financially for retirement, and that they will have enough money for health care expenses and long-term care, have all fallen," the report states. "These drops in confidence are likely directly related to a lack of planning and growing uncertainty about the future, as well as lower retirement savings and increased concern about retirement expenses."

Read more on LifeHealthPro.