Half of Americans Are At Risk for a Disastrous Retirement

I've Moved! The Boomer Chronicles has closed after 6 years, but you can keep up with me on my new blog at http://www.rheabecker.com

The report from the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College sums up the trouble:

The sharp decline in the stock market in 2008 placed the retirement security of many Americans at risk. Although the market has rebounded sharply since its trough in March 2009, as of mid-October 2009 the Standard and Poor’s 500 Index (S&P 500) remained 29.8 percent below its peak level two years earlier.

Are you in the half that’s doing OK, or the half that’s underwater? So far, so good for me. Although I don’t have anywhere near the requisite $1 million they say you need, I feel like I’m doing OK. Am I delusional? Maybe. Meanwhile, I’m working on developing a taste for Fancy Feast.

Here’s a link to a summary of the retirement study, and here’s the full retirement report.





8 Responses to “Half of Americans Are At Risk for a Disastrous Retirement”

  1. Diana Says:

    I am living off of my IRA’s and 401(k)’s and my I have 5 years before I can receive full SS benefits. I am right at the balance point, so far my withdraws are equal to growth in my retirement accounts. But if a major expense comes along or another maket decline happens, then I might have to start taking from my principle.

  2. Douglas Says:

    Wouldn’t it have been nice if someone had taken 30-somethings (for me that would have, oh, 30 years ago) and bashed them over the heads with the realities of living past 50? Alas, they tried. Just without the huge market crash. I paid attention in my 40’s and 50′ to the mini crashes and was only inconvenienced by the Dot Com bubble popping. A lesson learned then? Don’t listen to your broker, he’s more worried about his income than your retirement.

    I am, so far, in the “lucky” half.

  3. Suldog Says:

    A million? I don’t have ten thousand. Please.

  4. Rhea Says:

    I know, Sul, a million sounds utterly ridiculous.

  5. tshsmom Says:

    We had to liquidate our nest egg in order to remain eligible for our state-run health insurance plan. We always knew that we’d never be able to fully retire, but now we’ll have to work full-time until they nail the coffin shut.

    We’ve been debt-free for 4 yrs and still can’t get ahead. Our dwindling pay all goes to utilities, insurance, and food.

  6. joan Says:

    I am counting on our pension and social security. Hopefully it will be enough. Hope it will be there 15 years from now.

  7. Hattie Says:

    It’s harder for boomers than for pre-boomers like us. My husband still works, though. One thing I see my friends overlooking is that yes, you have more time but no, you don’t have the kind of money you used to. You have to slow down your spending.

  8. Rich Says:

    I am worth more dead than alive. so I guess I may be under water when it comes to having enough to retire.

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