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18th Annual Retirement Confidence Survey:(R) Workers Show Record Drop in Retirement Confidence, Health Care and Economy Are Major Concerns
Date:4/9/2008

ound that about half of workers (47 percent) say they and/or their spouse have tried to calculate how much money they will need for a comfortable retirement, up considerably from the low point of 29 percent measured in 1996. As before, the 2008 survey finds that doing a retirement savings calculation is particularly effective at changing worker behavior: 44 percent who calculated a goal changed their retirement planning, and of those almost two-thirds (59 percent) started saving or investing more.

The RCS is the country's most established and comprehensive study of the attitudes and behavior of American workers and retirees toward all aspects of saving, retirement planning, and long-term financial security. Full results of the survey appear in the April 2008 EBRI Issue Brief available online at http://www.ebri.org/publications/ib/index.cfm?fa=ibDisp&content_id=3903, along with five RCS Fact Sheets that provide additional detail on health costs, saving for retirement, gender issues, age issues, and attitudes on Social Security and Medicare. The survey was funded by contributions from 40 underwriters.

The survey picked up several other signs of public unease about retirement:

-- Overall concerns about basic expenses: Confidence in specific financial aspects related to retirement decreased. In particular, the percentage very confident in having enough money to take care of basic expenses decreased from 40 percent in 2007 to 34 percent in 2008 for workers and from 48 percent to 34 percent for retirees.

-- Worker health concerns: Measured another way, workers said they are increasingly not confident about having enough money for medical expenses (43 percent in 2008, up from 32 percent in 2007) and for long-term care expenses (54 percent in 2008, up from 44 percent last year).

-- Retiree concerns: Retirees' loss of confidence is
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SOURCE Employee Benefit Research Institute
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