Middle-Income Boomers Commit to Retirement Savings

A recent study reveals middle-income Boomers are demonstrating a commitment to saving for retirement, despite a bleak economic outlook.

One-fifth (18%) of those surveyed by the Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center for a Secure Retirement (CSR) say they are saving more money now than before the economic turbulence of the last few years, and more than half (55%) are spending less on discretionary items than before the recession.  

The study also reports a large number of Boomers are maintaining their retirement contributions. Twenty percent of middle-income Boomers whose employers contribute to their retirement plan report that their employer reduced matching contributions. However, almost all (95%) of those surveyed who participate in their employer’s plan maintained or increased their personal contribution. 

Although a majority (52%) of Boomers report having a 401(k) and 48% say they own an IRA, the study found 14% of middle-income Boomers do not have a 401(k), IRA, pension or any other type of retirement account. 

On the down side, CSR's Middle-Income Boomers, Financial Security and the New Retirement study, which focused on 500 middle-income Americans between ages 47 and 65 with income between $25,000 and $75,000, found nearly one-third (21%) of Boomers have not seen any rebound in the value of their retirement accounts, 16% report owing more on their mortgage than their home is worth, and one-fifth (19%) have less than $10,000 in retirement savings. 

The study also cites one-third (32%) of those surveyed who own a home have already paid off their mortgage. However, close to half (48%) do not expect to have it paid off before they retire. 

The study was conducted in March 2011 by the independent research firm The Blackstone Group. The complete report can be viewed at http://www.CenterForASecureRetirement.com.