With a generally stronger economy in the United States and a high level of performance in the stock market, confidence in the ability for workers and retirees to fund their post-work lives has increased to all-time highs. This is according to the 2019 Retirement Confidence Survey Summary Report, conducted and released by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI).
Conducted throughout the month of January 2019, the respondent pool consisted of a total of 2,000 people. All respondents were over the age of 25, with 1,000 of them being active workers and the other 1,000 being retirees. Among the key findings is a noted increase in the confidence respondents shared in their ability to live comfortably in retirement. While the overall figure of 67 percent is comparable with the figure recorded in the 2018 survey, more pronounced was a more enthusiastic variation of the answer.
“The share who feel ‘very confident’ has risen significantly (23% versus 17% in 2018), though this increased confidence is similar to levels measured in the late 1990s and early 2000s,” the survey results say. “Also up from last year, 59% are confident they will have enough money to take care of medical expenses during retirement and 52% are confident they will have enough for long-term care.”
Respondents also believe that they’re doing a good job in actually saving their money for the future, and 7 in 10 respondents relayed excitement concerning their savings activity. Most of the respondents also agreed, though, that the idea of saving for retirement is a stressful one, and while most of those surveyed can agree on a general feeling of greater optimism, less than half of those surveyed have actually crunched the numbers to try and determine what will actually be required of them in retirement.
“While 2 in 3 are confident they are doing a good job saving for retirement and know how much they will need to have saved to live comfortably, only 42% have actually tried to calculate how much money they will need,” the survey says. That figure decreases to 33% for those who have made an effort to calculate what their medical expenses will look like after they conclude their careers.
Confidence specifically among retirees has also rebounded from the lower level recorded by the same survey in 2018, with 8 in 10 retirees recording confidence in believing they will have enough money to live comfortably throughout retirement. Retired respondents also related much more confidence in both their ability to afford the lifestyle to which they’re accustomed (77% in 2019 versus 70% in 2018) and in having enough financial resources to last the full remainder of their lives (76% in 2019 versus 67% in 2018).
Read more details of the report in the summary of its findings.