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Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-13-2007, 06:51 AM   #1
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Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Robert Powell/Marketwatch article on Americans saving for retirement based on the EBRI survey.

http://tinyurl.com/2d4ntd
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-13-2007, 11:56 AM   #2
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

The reality is that many Americans retired last week, last month, last year and the last decade. So since so many Americans are retiring all the time, they have to have done something right. I guess that retiring is just not that big a deal and you don't need as much moolah as the financial press would want you to have. Maybe most people only need $25,000?
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-13-2007, 12:15 PM   #3
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Quote:
Originally Posted by LOL!
The reality is that many Americans retired last week, last month, last year and the last decade. So since so many Americans are retiring all the time, they have to have done something right. I guess that retiring is just not that big a deal and you don't need as much moolah as the financial press would want you to have. Maybe most people only need $25,000?
Yup 25K is enough until you use up the home equity all the way and get SS or public assistance. Some of us prefer not to have to move in on family or beg the gov't or social service agencies. We prefer to FIRE and enjoy life!
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-13-2007, 12:29 PM   #4
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy connie
Yup 25K is enough until you use up the home equity all the way and get SS or public assistance. Some of us prefer not to have to move in on family or beg the gov't or social service agencies. We prefer to FIRE and enjoy life!
Crazy talk!
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-13-2007, 04:33 PM   #5
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Quote:
Originally Posted by LOL!
The reality is that many Americans retired last week, last month, last year and the last decade. So since so many Americans are retiring all the time, they have to have done something right. I guess that retiring is just not that big a deal and you don't need as much moolah as the financial press would want you to have. Maybe most people only need $25,000?
It'd be nice to see surveys on the financials of folks just retiring or maybe 1 year after. Is it possible that many of these represent the lagging edge of those grandfathered in to still getting pensions and medical benefits?
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-13-2007, 10:01 PM   #6
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Some blue collar workers still have jobs with pensions and health benefits, as does the military. I hear that they are hiring.
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-14-2007, 05:28 AM   #7
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

I believe that people need help!. In this new age of self-funded retirement, most people do not know what and/or how to approach it. It would help if they started making basic personal finance classes mandatory in high school! Since finance is so important to all of us... I am at a loss to understand why it is not.

SS is needed. It ensures that there is some very basic safety net for those that will not prepare. Otherwise, taxpayers would foot the bill with money subsidies.

Bottom line: there is a segment of the population that will never prepare for retirement (for what ever reason). SS winds up being a safety net. And it should remain mandatory! That said, some sort of reform to the program is probably needed.
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-14-2007, 07:17 AM   #8
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaco
I believe that people need help!. In this new age of self-funded retirement, most people do not know what and/or how to approach it. It would help if they started making basic personal finance classes mandatory in high school!
I think people understand the need for savings/invetments - they just ignore it.

I read this interesting article years ago (will try to post link) where the human mind under values the risk of long term events and over values the risk of short term immediate events

People know they shouldn't eat fried eggs for breakfast - yet they do - the long term heart risk is "rationally minimized" by the mind.

Yet humans habitually overestimate the risks of a plane crash (yet statistically remote).

So the mind biases towards "short term gratification and survival" - which may explain:
1. Why Americans are "consumption-holics" and
2. Long term retirement actions get pushed way back in mind

That's enough - gotta go eat some fried eggs.....
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-14-2007, 10:29 AM   #9
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaco
I believe that people need help!. In this new age of self-funded retirement, most people do not know what and/or how to approach it. It would help if they started making basic personal finance classes mandatory in high school! Since finance is so important to all of us... I am at a loss to understand why it is not.
Actually, that is starting to change.....

http://www.cnn.com/2007/EDUCATION/04...ney/index.html

"Utah is one state aggressively promoting personal finance. In addition to standards in traditional subject areas, Utah has standards in financial literacy and requires a financial literacy course to graduate from high school.

Gayle Whitefield is the business department chair at Riverton High School in Riverton, Utah. She says high bankruptcy rates prompted state officials to act fast to teach kids about money management."
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-14-2007, 12:03 PM   #10
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Well, there is another segment of the population that just can not save. They don't have a college degree, in fact many do not even have a high school degree. They barely make enough money to put food on the table and pay the rent, as their income is that low.

So, how do you view these people? Do you take the staunch position that ANYBODY can save, no matter what they make? What about all the single woman strugling alone to raise their children with little or no support from the father. Do you think they can save?

My mother was left with five children to raise by herself. I had a deadbeat Dad, who in those days, the courts would do nothing to collect child support, and if they did, it still wouldn't be enough for her to save. She lacked any real skills to earn any sort of decent income.

The outcome of the above scenerio is now my mother is 86 yrs. old. She has no income other than her social security of $900 a month. I have had to support her for many, many years (along with a rmentally retarded brother living with her) What about these women out there. There are millions of them. What are they to do?
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving
Old 04-14-2007, 03:03 PM   #11
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Re: Pollyanna perceptions of retirement saving

Mad Hatter,
Agreed. SS and similar safety nets are essential in a humane society. There will always be people whom life has thrown curve-balls. Important to remember here, where almost everybody is a prodigious saver. And it must be hard for you to save, too, since your are helping out your mother and brother. Thanks for the reminder of the uphill battles some people face in the savings area, often through no fault of their own.
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