Who is really making financial decisions?
Similar to studies that find women and men differ when it comes to investing styles, research from LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute reveals that two-thirds of women (67%) age 50 and older say they split financial decisions with their spouses, while fewer than half of men (46%) admit to sharing decisions.
In households with more than $1 million in net worth, only 30% of women are the primary financial decisionmakers. The study also found that when women are the primary decisionmakers, they are as likely or more likely to have completed many retirement-planning activities, compared with men.
For both women and men who are primary decision makers, one-quarter have a formal retirement income plan. Women are more likely to have determined what their income will be, how long their assets will last and developed a specific plan for generating retirement income from their savings.
An important takeaway: LIMRA finds that advisers who help their clients with retirement income planning have greater client satisfaction and loyalty. Nearly half of clients (42%) with a plan trust their advisers and the advice they provide—three times more than those clients without a plan.
Yet many couples disagree about their desired lifestyles in retirement. According to an Allianz Life Insurance study, 70% of women switch advisers following the death of their spouse, which is echoed in other studies. Therefore, it is important to involve both spouses in the financial decisions, which will foster a stronger relationship with both spouses.
Other findings from LIMRA:
- 76% of women have determined Social Security benefits, vs. 73% of men;
- 60% of men have calculated the amount of assets and investments available to spend, vs. 44% of women; and
- 41% of women have developed a specific strategy for generating income from savings, vs. 34% of men.
A link to LIMRA’s graphic on planning activities completed by men and women can be accessed on their website.