Soaring Healthcare Expenses Top Retirement Concerns of Middle-Income Americans, New Study Unveils

Jun 07, 2011, 08:00 ET from Bankers Life and Casualty Company

CHICAGO, June 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Healthcare expenses, inflation and outliving their money are the top three financial concerns that the majority (78 percent) of America's middle-income Baby Boomers have about retirement, according to a new study released by the Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center for a Secure Retirement(SM) (CSR).

The CSR's Middle-Income Boomers, Financial Security and the New Retirement study of 500 middle-income Americans between ages 47 and 65 with income between $25,000 and $75,000, found that nearly all (95 percent) of the survey participants have financial concerns about retirement, particularly around healthcare (80 percent), and are taking drastic measures to cut costs.

The report cites two in three (64 percent) have taken action to reduce their healthcare expenses, including holding off going to the doctor (55 percent), postponing an elective surgery (26 percent) or changing to a less expensive healthcare plan (25 percent).

In addition, more than half (55 percent) of respondents say that they are spending less on discretionary items such as dining out, vacations and gifts, and 43 percent have reduced their credit card debt.  

America's financial meltdown was a wake-up call for many middle-income Boomers and according to the study, nearly half (47 percent) of those surveyed expect that the changes they have made in their financial behavior will most likely be permanent.

But the current economic uncertainty continues to be a major cause for concern for many pre-retirees, especially middle-income women.  The CSR's study found that women ages 47 to 65 tend to have more financial worries about retirement than men.  Their most pressing concerns include inflation, living longer than their savings and declines in the stock market.

"Adequately planning and saving for retirement now is the best defense against life's unexpected financial burdens later," said Scott Perry, president of Bankers Life and Casualty Company, a national life and health insurer.  "Set a clear retirement goal with realistic expectations and remember to revisit your plan on a periodic basis to address changes in your personal situation and the world around us."

Methodology

The Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center for a Secure Retirement's study Middle-Income Boomers, Financial Security and the New Retirement was conducted in March 2011 by the independent research firm The Blackstone Group.  The complete report can be viewed at www.CenterForASecureRetirement.com

About the Center for a Secure Retirement

The Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center for a Secure Retirement is the Company's research and consumer education program.  Its studies and consumer awareness campaigns provides insight and practical advice for how everyday Americans can achieve financial security during retirement.

Established in 1879 in Chicago, Bankers Life and Casualty Company focuses on the insurance needs of the retirement market.  The nationwide company, a subsidiary of CNO Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE: CNO), offers a broad portfolio of life and health insurance retirement products designed especially for seniors.

SOURCE Bankers Life and Casualty Company

Related Links

http://www.CenterForASecureRetirement.com