Today’s workers anticipate retiring much later than previous generations, according to a new global retirement planning study.

The study, by AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company, also found that people expect to come up short when they retire. The average age of retirees polled around the world is 57 years old.

However, current workers anticipate retiring at 61 — a full four years later.

In addition to working longer, people in most countries are expecting a lower standard of living in retirement. Globally, 43 percent of workers and 30 percent of retirees believe their retirement income will be insufficient. Working people know they need to prepare for retirement, with 46 percent saying they have started to prepare and an additional 37 percent intending to start later.

“Our survey shows people realize they will be increasingly dependent on personal savings in retirement but aren’t ready,” said Andrew McMahon, senior executive vice president of AXA Equitable and president of its Financial Protection & Wealth Management business. “Clearly individuals are coming to terms with the reality that they won’t be able to retire until many years after they hoped, unless they prepare successfully.”

Americans are among the top nations surveyed to say that they have already started their retirement planning. Among U.S. workers, 72 percent said they have started saving for retirement, compared with a global average of 46 percent. Not only has a large percentage of Americans started preparing for retirement, they are starting younger than people in other countries. U.S. workers are among the youngest to say that they have started to prepare for retirement. The average age in the U.S. is 31, compared with the worldwide age of 34.

Although Americans seem more prepared than their counterparts in other countries, the anticipated retirement age is still among the highest of any country. The average American anticipates retiring at 64, three years older than the survey average of 61, and six years older than their desired retirement age of 58.

Register or login for access to this item and much more

All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.

Community members receive:
  • All recent and archived articles
  • Conference offers and updates
  • A full menu of enewsletter options
  • Web seminars, white papers, ebooks

Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access