A new survey of investors who are currently working shows that concerns about rising health-care costs, changes to Social Security and/or Medicare, and running out of money are among the greatest financial worries in retirement. The percentage citing these concerns increased since prior surveys.
According to the study, conducted as a part of the John Hancock Investor Sentiment Index by Mathew Greenwald & Associates for Signator Investors, Inc., the financial risk of rising health-care costs in retirement was the greatest concern of the non-retired investors surveyed, with a majority (55 %) saying they were very concerned. This is a 7-point jump from last year’s survey, the study noted. Overall, 89 percent of this year’s respondents expressed some concern about rising health-care costs.
“Though being able to afford healthcare isn’t a new issue, the fact that more affluent workers are very worried about it than not, points to the value advisors can provide to help clients develop strategies to manage it,” said Matt Rigatti, vice president, Signator Investors, Inc.
“We’ve already seen movement in the direction of tools that address healthcare, specializations--or including a healthcare finance-oriented specialist on a client’s team and I suspect we’ll continue seeing growth in that area.”
The following two high-ranking concerns are significantly lower, and had smaller increases. Changes to Social Security and/or Medicare was the second most cited financial risk, with slightly more than one-third (34%) of respondents citing they were very concerned, up from slightly below a third (32%) last year. Overall, nearly three-quarters (74%) of respondents cited concern about this risk.
The third most “very concerning” risk-- running out of money in retirement-- crept up from 26 percent in 2012 to 28 percent in 2013. Overall, 65 percent of respondents this year felt this issue was of concern.
“All of these topics are related,” said Rigatti. “And similar to last year, a large percentage of non-retired investors who say they work with advisors (73%) said they felt it was important that their financial professional have special retirement income certification in addition to other required credentials.”
The survey was of 1,013 investors, 703 of whom were not retired. It was conducted online by the independent research firm, Mathew Greenwald & Associates. Respondents were selected from among members of Research Now’s online research panel. To qualify, respondents were required to participate at least to some extent in their household’s financial decision-making process, have a household income of at least $75,000, and assets of $100,000.
By Ayo Mseka