Women more worried at retirement shortfall

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Almost one third of Australians expect a large financial shortfall at retirement, with a further quarter of Australians expecting some shortfall to exist, a new report shows.

According to the MLC Retirement Survey, only 3.5% of Australians expect to have more than enough money to maintain their lifestyles in retirement.  
The survey of 2000 Australians also found nearly 70% of respondents failed to consider major financial setbacks such as illness or unemployment in their retirement plans, with only 8.5% having a well-considered plan for major setbacks.
The top three barriers to sufficient retirement savings continue to be major health issues, loss of employment and lack of formal investment plan, the study shows. 
Women are the biggest worriers when it comes to superannuation – inadequate funds for retirement, losing money, fees and inflation being their biggest fears. More than one third (36%) of women indicated they will have far from enough money at retirement.
Men are more optimistic when it comes to their financial situation at retirement with over one third (37.4%) expecting to have enough or more than enough to retire. Men aged 18 to 29 years old were the most relaxed about their financial situation at retirement.
The study showed Queensland residents gave the least consideration to major setbacks in their retirement plans, and Western Australian residents have the strongest intention to divest shares, bonds, balanced funds and invest more in superannuation.
Despite the cautious outlook for the economy, respondents reported a growing appetite for direct shares, particularly from those earning $75,000 to $100,000 per annum.
“It’s encouraging to see Australians thinking more about superannuation but as the survey suggests, there’s still not nearly enough being invested for retirement,” NAB Wealth group executive Andrew Hagger said.
He suggested Australians who want to take control and get active in their retirement savings should seek financial advice to get the help they need to reach their goals.
“Over 56% of respondents expect to have at least some or a major shortfall at retirement. Wealth is the result of hard work, good decisions and good advice, and MLC strongly believes in the difference advice can make to someone’s life.”

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