Despite (or perhaps because of) the incessant noise churned out by the financial media in relation to saving for our retirements, data continues to show that individuals are falling short in that department.
For example, according to the 2014 Retirement Confidence Survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, 52% of workers stated that they have less than US$10,000 saved for retirement, with 36% having less than US$1,000. At the same time, only 18% of those surveyed felt “very confident” that they’ll have enough saved for their later years.
The results of this survey are nothing new. You will see similarly worrying metrics from participants in a number of Western countries – places where governments can no longer afford to provide the level of paternalistic support as before. So why are people so reticent to put money aside? There’s a lot to be said for being burnt by the financial crisis, the scale of consumer indebtedness and an inability/unwillingness to look that far into the future.
Unfortunately, the world has changed. The era of large company pensions, strong and stable social security programs, and significant equity in property to drawdown, has gone for most of us.
This means the responsibility is back on each and every one of us. So if you’re still waiting for someone to ride up on a white charger to save the day, you may just find out that no one’s coming….