- Higher confidence correlates with higher household income and household participation in a retirement plan.
- Retiree, as distinguished from current worker, confidence, jumped up 10 percentage points to 28% who are very confident.
- Confidence in the ability to afford retirement expenses also has rebounded slightly but the overall figures are still on the low side (29% very confident).
- Debt is on the mind of many workers. According to the RCS, 58% of workers and 44% of retirees are having debt-related challenges. What's more, 24% of workers and 17% of retirees report higher levels than from 5 years ago.
- Many have minimal or no retirement savings, with 60% of those surveyed reporting $25,000 or less, including 36% with less than $1,000 saved.
- More than half (53%) of workers say that the cost of living and day-to-day expenses are the primary reasons for not saving enough for retirement.
How do we solve the confidence problem? While the RCS points out that there are some signs of improvement, I think that the bigger picture is that there is still a very long way to go for people to feel generally more optimistic. Debt and everyday expenses are on the minds of many. How can we talk to people about saving for the future when the present is its own challenge? Telling people that they need to save more for retirement is all well and good, but it doesn't get at more immediate needs. Creative ideas that will resolve both current and future challenges is what is needed.