BOSTON (TheStreet) -- The nation's wealthy seem to be every bit as concerned about retirement as their middle-class counterparts.
In its recent study, The Age Illusion: How the Wealthy are Redefining Their Retirement, Barclays Wealth, the wealth management division of Barclays Bank (BCS) (Stock Quote: BCS), found anxiety levels running high among the affluent looking at retirement, as well as lingering doubt about financial preparedness for that phase of life.
The report was based on a global survey of more than 2,000 people with $1.5 million or more in investable assets.
(BCS) Only 48% of U.S. high net worth people would completely classify themselves as financially secure. One in 10 of the wealthiest surveyed (meaning they had more than $15 million in investable assets) feel they don't have enough money for retirement. Among the global pool of wealthy respondents who are already retired, only 51% are "completely confident" they have enough money.
Why, given the unlikely prospect that cat food and a cardboard box lie ahead, are the wealthy so unsure?
"The wealthy are the people who have the most to lose, so it's a little bit understandable that they are anxious," says Matt Brady, head of Wealth Advisory Americas at Barclays Wealth.
He sees a number of factors at play, not the least of which is the jolt provided by collapsing financial markets throughout the Great Recession.
The predictability, or lack thereof, of expenses and projected investment returns is a top-of-mind issue.
The authors of the report found it "unexpected" that respondents in emerging markets are much more likely to view investment returns as "quite predictable" or "very predictable" in the context of planning for retirement, despite a general perception of these markets themselves as being economically unpredictable.
Only a quarter of respondents in the U.K. and Japan, countries with highly developed financial systems, thought their returns were as predictable. By contrast, almost three-quarters of respondents in Saudi Arabia, Latin America or India thought they were. Only 41% of North American respondents said they were confident with their assumptions.