Research says the pandemic has disrupted the retirement plans of 35% of Americans

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The Covid-19 pandemic is an economic boon for some people, and a disaster for others.

Now, these effects appear in one place again: the expected retirement date.

A recent Northwestern Mutual survey found that the pandemic prompted 35% of Americans to change their age when they expected to retire.

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Among these respondents, 24% said they plan to retire later than before the pandemic. At the same time, 11% said they plan to retire early.

Those who postpone their retirement date mostly said they plan to postpone it by three to five years, 39% of the respondents said. However, it is closely followed by 35% of respondents with a time span of more than 10 years.

Those who change their retirement dates early also plan to do so three to five years in advance.

It is worth noting that according to the Northwestern Mutual survey, the average expected retirement age has also changed.

The average expected retirement age is now 62.6 years old, compared with 63.4 years old last year.

Expectations vary from generation to generation. Generation Z and millennials are expected to retire at 59.4 and 59.5 years, respectively.

At the same time, Gen X is expected to retire at 64.3, while baby boomers hope to push their retirement age to 68.3.

Of course, whether you want to retire earlier or later, it is difficult to determine when to retire.

Christian Mitchell, executive vice president and chief customer officer of Northwestern Mutual, said: “Sometimes, in practice, it is more difficult to retire later than planned than in theory.”

He said that workers’ own health problems, need to take care of their loved ones or the difficult job market may force them to retire early.

Mitchell said that the fact that young employees are expected to retire early shows that people’s attitudes towards careers and retirement are changing. For these groups, it will be more common to have multiple occupations and vacations, which will continue to be expected before and after retirement.

One highlight of the survey is that people now save an average of $98,800 for retirement, up from $87,500 last year.

However, this is a far cry from the number of respondents who said they expect to retire comfortably-US$1.047 million, up from US$950,800 last year.

Mitchell said this shortcoming demonstrates the importance of working with financial advisors to help think about all possible futures and how to prepare for them.

Mitchell said: “You really need an expert, and knows this in all these areas, to help you make big decisions.”

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