Only 61 percent of individuals said that they were "very confident" or "somewhat confident" of having enough money for retirement. That was down from 70 percent in 2007. What's more, this was the poorest showing since 63 percent in 2001, when the economy was in recession.
The percentage of workers who put themselves in the "very confident" category dropped to 18 percent this year from 27 percent last year. The 9 point drop was the biggest in the survey's 18 years history, EBRI said.
Confidence among already retired workers also fell, with just 29 percent saying this year they were "very confident" they had enough for a comfortable retirement, down from 41 percent in 2007, according to EBRI, a nonprofit group based in Washington, D.C.
Temple University business professor Jack VanDerhei, who was co-author of the study, said that workers and retirees were reacting to the many things currently hurting personal finances, from rising gas prices to the decline in home values and the drop in portfolio balances.
"The economy and health costs are major concerns," said EBRI President Dallas Salisbury. "If there is a silver lining, it's that Americans finally may be waking up to the realities of being able to afford retirement."
The good news, it appears, is that most Americans are trying to save money for their later years.
Some 72 percent of workers said they have saved some money toward retirement, while 64 percent are putting away money. Unfortunately, 22 percent of workers say they have no savings of any kind, the study found.
Retirement savings are not all that great, however.
Nearly 50 percent of workers have set aside less than $25,000 for their retirement, while 24 percent have $25,000 to $99,999, 15 percent have $100,000 to $249,999, and 12 percent have $250,000 or more. The figures do not include the values of primary residences or pensions.
Four Retirement Sayings and Retirement Quotes about Earning Money to Help Your Retirement Planning
Money will appear when you are doing the right thing in your life.
- Michael Phillips
Money is the seed of money, and the first guinea is sometimes more difficult to acquire than the second million.
- Jean Jacques Rousseau
It's no trick to make a lot of money, if all you want is to make a lot of money.
- Everett Sloane in the movie Citizen Kane
To be clever enough to get a great deal of money, one must be stupid enough to want it.
- George Bernard Shaw
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