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Determination, Early Saving And Discipline Among Lessons Learned From Successful Retirement Savers

PITTSBURGH, Sept. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Almost two-thirds (64 percent) of Americans with $100,000 or more in assets say they are on target or ahead of their retirement planning goals while a third (35 percent) say their retirement planning goals have not been adversely affected by the recession, according to survey findings by The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC).

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Asked the most important retirement-related decisions they have made in their lives, almost half (47 percent) of the 1,038 respondents pointed to "living within my means" while more than a third (35 percent) say they "started saving from an early or at a young age." Forty-two percent say saving for retirement is their primary financial goal.

Survey respondents demonstrated financial discipline other than saving, as 46 percent said they have reduced debt, one-third (33 percent) have changed their spending habits, and one-quarter (23 percent) have paid off their mortgage.

According to the " Perspectives of Retirement Survey: Lessons from Successful Savers" survey, nearly three quarters (72 percent) invest as much as they can through their employment retirement account and almost two-thirds (62 percent) regularly save in addition to their employment account.

"Clearly, the lesson is: work and save more now while you are in your prime earning years so that you have the option of not working at all during retirement," said Stephen Pappaterra, head of wealth planning for PNC. "A pattern of making good decisions, planning and sticking to the plan is a theme repeated throughout the survey."

The survey, which focuses on Americans between the ages of 35 and 70 with at least $100,000 in total investable assets (representative of nearly 20 percent of U.S. households), also revealed that more than nine in 10 (92 percent) of non-retired households have money in an employer-sponsored retirement plan such as a 401 (k) or 403 (b).

Among retirees 80 percent say "I do not work at all outside the home." Only one out of 10 (12 percent) continue working including consulting or other flexible work arrangement, and only 6 percent say they wish they had some type of paid employment.

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