How Do Boomers Feel About Retirement, About You and the Products You Sell?

  • Originally published May 20, 2011 , last updated December 31, 2015
How Do Boomers Feel About Retirement, About You and the Products You Sell?

The baby boomers, all 76 million of them, are a complex group. And as hard as we all try to make blanket statements about how they feel about this or that, it’s dangerous to paint this group with too broad a brush. We offer that disclaimer immediately before we go ahead and ascribe a whole bunch of statistics about boomers' attitudes on everything from retirement to annuities to their advisors. Bottom line: these statistics are useful for learning about the group as a whole, but may say nothing about what the people you’re talking to believe.

Boomers by the Numbers:

  • 11% say they are strongly convinced they’ll be able to retire comfortably
  • 55% say they are fairly certain they will retire comfortably.
  • 44% have little or no faith that they’ll have enough money saved when their careers end.

Source: AP Lifegoesstrong.com poll

  • Boomers ranked annuities second-highest in satisfaction among all financial instruments, beating out mutual funds at 38%, stocks at 36%, U.S. savings bonds at 35% and CDs at 25%. Gold and precious metals came in first with a satisfaction rating of 62%.
  • When asked to choose the features that would be most important if they could build the ideal financial product, the most selected feature was “the ability to create a stable, predictable standard of living throughout retirement. In second and third place were the “ability to provide a guaranteed income stream for life” and “guaranteed not to lose value.”
  • 54% expressed distaste for the word "annuity."
  • 25% formed their opinion of annuities more than 20 years ago.
  • 80% preferred a product with 4% return and a guarantee against losing value over a product with 8% return and a vulnerability to market downturns.
  • 66% said trust is a major issue with financial advisors today.
  • 46% said a good financial advisor is worth every penny.
  • 37% said they want their financial advisor more focused on safety than growth.

Source: Allianz “Reclaiming the Future” study