IRI RESEARCH DEMONSTRATES NEED FOR CONSUMER EDUCATION ON RETIREMENT SECURITY

Posted on August 5, 2019

IRI Retirement Research - NAIC Summer 2019 Meeting

NAIC Retirement Security Initiative Focus “Aligns Well” with IRI Findings

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Research shows that too many Americans are ill-prepared for their retirement years, which are lasting longer while many retirees have zero savings, according to the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI), the leading trade association for the retirement income industry.

IRI presented a summary of both its annual Retirement, Income and Risk study and its Baby Boomer Expectations for Retirement study to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) during the regulators’ summer conference. The NAIC’s retirement security initiative focuses on three elements - education, innovation, and consumer protection.

“Our research shows that too many Americans are saving too little for their retirement and may have mismatched expectations about retirement income and expenses,” said Jason Berkowitz, IRI chief legal and regulatory affairs officer.

IRI research shows that almost half of boomers believe they’ll need retirement income of less than $35,000 a year in today’s dollars, but Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows average spending of $46,000 a year between ages 65 and 74.

“We believe this can be attributed, at least in part, to a lack of understanding about how much it costs to live in retirement,” Berkowitz added.

Berkowitz outlined several IRI research findings that working with a financial professional and owning an annuity are strong predictors of retirement readiness and confidence:

  • Boomers with financial advisors and those who own annuities are two to three times more likely to believe they did an effective job planning and that their income will last throughout retirement.
  • Seven in 10 boomers with advisors and six in 10 annuity owners feel either “excited and confident” or “happy and cautiously optimistic” about retirement.
  • And Boomers with advisors are three times as likely, and annuity owners more than twice as likely, as those who don’t have advisors or own annuities to believe they will be more secure in retirement than the average American.

Berkowitz concluded, “By ensuring that consumers have access to a wide variety of annuities and lifetime income solutions, and trustworthy professional guidance about when and how to use them, we can make great strides towards a world in which a secure and dignified retirement is attainable for all Americans.”

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Contact:Dan Zielinski