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Boomer women are more worried about money than men

Monday, October 15, 2012  
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Baby Boomer women are more uncomfortable, worried or concerned than Boomer men about their current financial situation and what the future may hold for them, according to an AARP Public Policy Institute survey of nearly 4,000 boomers aged 50 to 64 with current or recent labor market experience.

On almost all measures, women were more uncomfortable, worried or concerned than men about their current financial situation and what the future may hold for them. For example, they were more uncomfortable about their levels of debt and current savings; they were less confident they would have enough money for a comfortable retirement; and they were more concerned about maintaining a reasonable standard of living in retirement, about being able to pay for adequate health care and long-term care, about inflation’s impact on their income and about having to rely on family members for financial assistance.

Boomer women’s greater concern about their financial well-being, especially in retirement, is understandable, AARP found. Because women typically live longer than men, their money has to last longer, but they may not have much in addition to Social Security to rely on. Women’s greater care-giving responsibilities often mean that women have to scale back their work schedules. Postponing retirement isn’t always an option for them. Differences by sex were more often significant when it came to being "very” rather than "somewhat” uncomfortable or concerned. Men were significantly more concerned (i.e., "somewhat” concerned) when it came to the ability of a spouse or partner to maintain the same standard of living should the husband die first.

Since husbands typically do die before their wives, it makes sense that this would be a greater concern for men, AARP noted. Men were also somewhat more likely than women to expect that their financial situation would worsen over the following year.

AARP fact sheet

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