Near-Retirees at All Incomes Are Almost 1/3 Short of Target Retirement Savings
August Unemployment Report for Workers Over 55
Yesterday the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a 3.2% unemployment rate for workers ages 55 and older in August, no change from July. While the headline unemployment rate for near retirees is low, it doesn’t indicate the economic fragility faced by workers aged 55-64.
Low-, middle-, and high-income near retirees are almost one-third short of the savings they need to maintain their standard of living in retirement. ReLab’s new report using just-released government data documents that the median level of retirement savings in IRAs and 401(k)-type plans among workers ages 55-64 is $15,000. When workers who do not have any retirement savings are excluded, the median is just $92,000 – a sum that would replace only about $400 per month for the rest of a person’s life.
Regardless of income, many older workers face an unpalatable choice between delaying retirement or downward mobility in retirement. If forced to stay in the labor market, jobs for older workers are often low-paid and lacking retirement coverage. For many, delaying retirement is not an option due to physical and mental limitations and employer distaste for older workers.