Wells Fargo Survey Reveals Americans’ Attitudes About Planning For Retirement

Jan 7, 2013
  |  by Strayer Univers...

Half of middle class Americans say their most important day-to-day financial concern is paying the monthly bills, according to the 2012 Wells Fargo Retirement Survey. However, a greater obstacle looms in the distance: saving for retirement, which ranks second among Americans’ major financial concerns.
 
The Wells Fargo survey revealed Americans’ attitudes about planning for retirement:
 
  • 36% of Americans have already written a plan for their retirement, which is up from 30% in 2011. 
  • Three-quarters of Americans describe their calculations for retirement to be essentially a guess; 22% describe their planning efforts as detailed and based on “calculations.” 
  • When provided with a list of activities, middle class Americans say that in the last 12 months, they’ve spent the most time “planning” a home remodel, followed by planning a vacation. Planning for retirement fell to third place in the list of priorities. 
  • Many Americans believe the 401(k) is the “best retirement savings vehicle,” followed by the IRA and a savings account. 
  • A third of Americans who have a 401(k) available through their employer are saving between 3% and 5% in their 401(k) plan, another third are saving between 6% and 10%, and 12% are saving 11% or more for their retirement.
  • Those contributing to an employer-offered 401(k) report that more companies are offering a match (77%) this year versus 66% a year ago. 
 
The Wells Fargo Retirement Survey is an annual telephone survey that is conducted by Harris Interactive. One thousand middle class Americans, ages 25 to 75, were interviewed between July 9, 2012 and Sept. 4, 2012.

 

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