Schroders Global Investor Study 2019: A quarter of people globally fear they are not saving enough ahead of retirement

A quarter (24%) of people globally are concerned they are not saving enough ahead of retiring, with baby-boomers[1] most fearful they are lacking savings, Schroders’ Global Investor Study 2019 has found.

The study – which surveyed over 25,000 investors across 32 locations around the world – found that over a third of baby-boomers (34%) were apprehensive about the amount they are saving, compared with 20% of millennials[2].

Regionally, investors in Asia and Europe were the most concerned that they had not saved enough, with 26% and 25% respectively, nervous about the size of their retirement pots. This compares with 22% in the Americas. In particular, 53% of people yet to retire in Japan were concerned, compared with 6% of people in India. 

Despite these misgivings, people on average globally expected to draw 10.3% out of their retirement savings each year and not run out of money, indicating that a mismatch exists between people’s current retirement provisions and what they are expecting to spend in retirement.

Indeed, a quarter of people thought they can take at least 15% each year. Investors in India were, on average, the most confident, expecting to be able to take 15% a year, compared with 7.3% for investors in Japan.

Sangita Chawla, Schroders’ Head of Retirement Savings, said:

“These findings indicate that a significant mismatch exists between how confident people are with their savings ahead of retiring and the amount they expect to draw upon once they have retired.

“This disconnect is worrying and implies that people globally are not being realistic about the lifestyle they want to enjoy when retired. People are living increasingly longer in retirement and should be able to enjoy their lives after work, safe in the knowledge that their retirement savings will sustain them. However this study suggest this may not be the case for many.

“It is imperative people start saving consistently and sufficiently as early as possible when working and, before retiring, do some serious thinking about the level of income they can afford to sustain throughout their well-earned retirements.”

The study indicated that people globally are saving decent sums, with those in the Americas saving the least (14.5%) followed by Europe (14.9%). Investors in Asia were, on average, saving the most at 15.9%.

At a country level people in Russia were saving the least (11.1%) followed by Spain (11.2%). At the other end of the spectrum were those in Austria and Switzerland saving 21.6% and 21.3% respectively.

Despite being further from their retirement, millennials were saving the highest proportion of their annual income (15.9%), compared with Generation X, baby-boomers and the silent generation[3] (14.7%, 13.7% and 13.1% respectively).

Encouragingly, almost all non-retired people globally (94%) think there are factors that would convince them to save more for retirement. More than a third of these said that more information explaining how much money they would need to achieve the lifestyle they want in retirement would convince them to save more for retirement.

People in general (34%) were also more inclined to take greater risk with their personal savings rather than their retirement savings.

Furthermore, younger generations took on more risk generally, assuming a longer-term view ahead of their retirement. However, older generations (10% of baby-boomers and 16% of The Silent Generation) were most likely to not know the risks facing their retirement savings compared to their personal savings.

*In April 2019, Schroders commissioned Research Plus Ltd to conduct an independent online survey of 25,743 people who invest from 32 locations around the globe. These included Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Spain, the UK and the US. This research defines “people” as those who will be investing at least €10,000 (or the equivalent) in the next 12 months and who have made changes to their investments within the last 10 years.

[1] Aged 51-70

[2] Aged 18-37

[3] Aged 71+

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