Younger Workers Less Likely To Have Retirement Figure

December 17, 2002 ( - Worker under the age of 30 are 38% less likely to have calculated the amount of savings necessary for a comfortable retirement than those over 30, according to the latest release of American Express Retirement Services' 2002 Participant Satisfaction Survey results.

The under 30 group is also less likely to have the resources to adequately forecast the amount necessary for a comfortable retirement.   Fifty-nine percent say they are more likely to perceive the advice of a friend or co-worker as “veryimportant” than are older respondents and 52% and morelikely to make contribution or asset allocation decisions based on ahunch.

However, the younger group may realize its shortcomings, as they are 117% more likely to feel a need for additional financial educationregarding financial life events, aside from retirement, than the oldergroup and 29% less likely to feel the need for additional pre-and post-retirement planning.

An earlier  release of survey results showed that goal setting can be important to a comfortable retirement, with participants who have calculated a retirement goal 146% more likely to be “very confident” in their retirement.  

American Express points to the Internet as a possible way to reach the younger group.   The survey showed workers under 30 are 28% more likely to have accessed their company-sponsored retirement plan account via the Internet than the older respondents and 44% more likely to prefer Internet content to receive information to reach retirement goals.

However, previous releases showed that it is not just younger workers looking for more financial education.   Overall,  46% of survey respondentswant more advice and assistance in choosing their investment options.   Specifically, plan participants are looking for better overall knowledge of market conditions, a simplified breakdown of investment options, an understanding of what to invest in and more information on how to choose the right funds.

The survey was mailed out to 10,000 randomly selected American Express Retirement Services 401(k) participants; results are based on the 495 returned responses.