Gen X Shows No Confidence in Retirement help from Gov’t

Posted On April 21, 2015

A survey recently released by PNC Financial Services Group Inc. offered some interesting findings about how different generations view retirement. The survey found that 51 percent of Generation Xers were saving more for their retirement since the recession, compared to 37 percent of Baby Boomers.

But wait a minute, you say. Baby Boomers are starting to retire. Shouldn’t this be the time for them to ramp up to retirement?

Another finding from the survey is telling, however. About two-third of the Gen-Xers surveyed believe they’ll be solely responsible for their retirement – and won’t be helped by Social Security, pensions, inheritances and the like — compared to 45 percent of the Baby Boomers surveyed.

Now we begin to see why saving for retirement may seem more urgent to Gen-Xers. They’ve been told most of their lives that Social Security can’t be trusted, that whether it’ll actually be there for them when they retire is not a given. The very idea of a pension seems archaic, a relic like the bones of a Tyrannosaurus Rex in a museum.

They have made their way in the world of the 401k, setting money aside as a matter of course – and if their employer will match to a certain percentage, so much the better. Seventy percent of those surveyed who were participating in a 401k at work got an employer match and 90 percent cited its importance to their retirement.

Does this self-reliance bring confidence? Not so much. Nearly three-fourths of the Gen Xers surveyed were worried that their savings won’t hold up through retirement, compared to 55 percent of the boomers surveyed.

Perhaps it is that lack of confidence that fuels the desire for self-reliance.

Categories: Generation X, Retirement