Millennial Expectations of Retirement Greater than Older Generations

But older generations expect a different experience in retirement for Millennials. 

When it comes to retirement, LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute research shows expectations vary greatly depending on consumers’ generations.

Fifty-eight percent of Millennials have high expectations of retirement, while only 39% of Gen X and 43% of non-retired Baby Boomers feel the same way.

The study reveals younger Baby Boomers and older Baby Boomers (ages 61 to 70) have different perceptions about their retirement. Young Baby Boomers are less confident in retirement prospects than older Baby Boomers. Less than half (44%) of young Baby Boomers are confident they will be able to live their desired retirement lifestyle versus 61% of older Baby Boomers.

The Institute’s report highlights that Millennial men have the highest expectations for their retirement lifestyle and are confident in achieving them. In comparison, Gen X women are the least likely to be confident in achieving their desired retirement lifestyles (6%).

When it comes to saving and planning for retirement, six in 10 non-retired consumers say saving for retirement is a top priority. In general, men are more likely than women to make retirement saving a priority. Two-thirds of men agree saving for retirement is important compared with just 51% of women. Millennial men are the most engaged with their retirement saving—71% of Millennial men say that saving for retirement is a top priority and 62% are very involved in monitoring or managing their retirement.

Most consumers anticipate significant changes in retirement for future generations. Eighty-three percent of retirees believe the retirement experience of their generation will look significantly different from those of future generations. Non-retirees agree: seven in 10 believe their retirement will look significantly different from the retirement of current retirees. While most believe these changes will be negative, consumers are reporting some positives as well. Among some of the potential upsides mentioned are more time for younger generations to plan, better planning tools and the ability of technology to improve the quality of life in retirement.

These results are based on a national survey of 1,686 U.S. adults completed in January 2017. LIMRA members can read the report on