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New Study Reveals Generations X and Y Feel Behind on Retirement Savings

TOPEKA, Kan., Sept. 8, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Two-thirds (66 percent) of Generations X and Y have not calculated how much they need to save for retirement, reveals the Greenwald & Associates' Gen XY Financial Maturity Study, sponsored by Security Benefit.

It's more than a lack of direction that is hurting Americans born between 1965 and 1992 – a significant portion believe saving for retirement is becoming more difficult, with two-thirds (65 percent) saying it's harder for their generation to save for retirement than it was for previous generations. Additionally, half (48 percent) of respondents believe they are behind on saving for retirement while just 43 percent said they were satisfied with their current financial situation.

"It's great to see Generations X and Y actively considering their retirement savings needs, but it's difficult to plan for and ultimately achieve a successful retirement without having an end-goal in mind," said Al Dal Porto, Vice President of Market Research with Security Benefit. "While accumulating retirement savings is critical at this point in the lives of Generations X and Y, it's encouraging to see that a significant portion of these individuals looking toward their inevitable retirement income needs."

The survey found that Generations X and Y place a premium on securing their financial futures. Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) said that a guaranteed stream of income in retirement is an important reason to purchase a financial product, while more than half (55 percent) said that it's important for a financial product to protect their assets from losses in the stock market.

Prioritizing Retirement Savings

Generations X and Y are still putting money aside for retirement despite the lack of clear goals and the perception of generation-specific hurdles. Ninety percent of respondents said saving for retirement is an important goal, and 88 percent said it's important to maintain their desired lifestyles in retirement.

The younger generations are actively working to fund their dream retirements through a variety of retirement savings vehicles, including:

  • 71 percent have used a 401(k), 403(b) or a 457 plan at work to save for retirement
  • 41 percent turned to a checking, savings or money market account expressly earmarked for retirement
  • 39 percent have saved through an IRA

Internet Isn't Leading Resource

Surprisingly, two of the generations that were instrumental in the growth of the Internet don't view online solutions or resources as the best option for retirement planning. Only 12 percent of respondents would prefer to save for retirement though a company or service they found online, while just 18 percent of respondents would go online for advice on how to save more.

"It's somewhat of a surprise that these generations, especially Generation Y, would prefer to use offline resources to guide their savings decisions," said Dal Porto. "It's clear that Generations X and Y prefer to use more traditional means of financial planning by working through employer-provided retirement services or consulting with a professional financial advisor."

Instead of turning to the web for help, Generations X and Y expressed a high preference to seek information through more traditional avenues. The survey found that only 17 and 18 percent said that an Internet search engine like Google or online reviews was a major source for financial information or advice. This is compared to 39 percent who said a financial advisor or planner is a major source of financial information or advice, and 27 percent who see their parents as a similar resource.

About the Study

A national, online study of Americans ages 21 to 48 was conducted from April 8-21 2014. A total of 2,122 individuals completed the survey. In a similarly-sized random sample survey, the margin of error would be +/- 2.2 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. The 2014 Gen XY Financial Maturity Study was conducted by Greenwald & Associates, an independent market research company, on behalf of a consortium of financial services companies, including Security Benefit.

About Security Benefit

Security Benefit is a 122-year-old, Kansas-based insurance company, which in recent years has become one of the fastest growing companies in the U.S. retirement market. Through a combination of innovative products, exceptional investment management and a unique distribution strategy, we have become a leader in a full range of retirement markets and wealth segments. To learn more about Security Benefit, visit www.securitybenefit.com.

CONTACT: Media Contacts: Peter MacKellar, Communications Strategy Group (303) 433-7020 pmackellar@csg-pr.com Dave Clauson, Security Benefit (785) 438-3035 dave.clauson@securitybenefit.com

Source: Security Benefit