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The Modern Road to Retirement - State of Current Retirees

May 8, 2018

Current retirees are healthier, wealthier, and living longer than any previous generation. This fact has been recently confirmed in a study by United Income titled “The State of Retirees-How Longer Lives Have Changed Retirement.

https://unitedincome.com/documents/papers/UnitedIncomeStateOfRetirees.pdf The study details how current retirees are using that additional vigor, money, and time. Here are some of the findings and conclusions, some of which may surprise you.  

Interesting Facts

The average life expectancy of 60-year-olds has increased by almost nine years since 1900. In addition to longer lives, more retirees are without physical or cognitive limitations. The average total wealth among retirees has increased by over 100 percent over the last 30 years to $752,000. The share of retirees who are millionaires has more than doubled during that time period, now accounting for one out of every six retirees.

Time Watching TV has Doubled

While longer, healthier lives has generally increased physical activity among retirees, the largest change in activity is a near doubling of the amount of time retirees watch TV over the past 40 years, now adding up to almost three hours every day. 

Largely Staying Put

As health and wealth have increased, cost of living priorities have given way to quality of life considerations. In particular, retirees are increasingly staying put, as many choose to stay implanted in the urbanized communities they knew during their working years, Similarly, there is no relationship between the popularity of a state among retirees and the state’s weather, tax burdens, crime rate, or density of educational institutions.

Feeling More Secure

With record levels of wealth, the feeling of financial insecurity among retirees has broadly declined. Most are placing value on quality of life considerations rather than just basic sustenance concerns. With the more basic issues addressed for a growing share of retirees, they are poised as a group to reimagine retirement with fewer constraints. 

Civic Potential

Collectively, retirees have never had it better, with more health, wealth, and time to enjoy life.  Although that additional vigor and wealth has initially been consumed largely with more hours in front of a TV, this group has tremendous civic potential that could be unlocked through creative market or public policy leadership, including potentially volunteer incentives to help address the broad educational, transportation, and building infrastructure needs facing the U.S.


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