Women Still Far Behind in Retirement Plans
COLUMBUS, Ohio (TheStreet) -- We've all seen headlines calling out the retirement savings crisis facing American workers and the need for them to take steps to protect their financial futures. One aspect of this issue that deserves more attention is the role gender can play in retirement readiness.
Several new studies have focused on this topic, including a Harris Interactive survey last year sponsored by Nationwide Financial Services (NFS), finding women's average defined contribution plan balances are 40% smaller than men's and that they meet with financial advisers less frequently.
|Women facing retirement have gender-based obstacles to overcome, but careful planning can help.|
When planning for retirement, there are three main obstacles women must overcome:Longevity
Women live an average of five years longer than men and are 10 times as likely to reach age 85, according to the American Association for Long-term Care Insurance. Longer life expectancies put women at greater risk of outliving their retirement assets and increase their chances of incurring long-term care costs. Women that live longer than their spouse may also face reduced household income from Social Security and pensions. One way women can help mitigate their longevity risk is with products, such as annuities, that can offer a guaranteed stream of income for life. Women should also consider whether they could benefit from some form of long-term care insurance to help manage costs when they reach old age. Time out of the work force
Women are the primary caregivers in this country and, according to the Women's Institute for a Secure Retirement, typically work 12 years less than men over their lifetime to care for children and other family members. While out of the work force, women are not able to build their pension benefits, pay into Social Security or contribute money to an employer's 401(k), all of which can hurt retirement income.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV