Encore: Retirees tend to be happier than younger people — even if their finances aren’t great

by | Oct 24, 2023 | Stock Market

Much of the work we do suggests that people are not saving enough for retirement. More specifically, since 2006 we have published our National Retirement Risk Index (NRRI), which uses the Federal Reserve’s triennial Survey of Consumer Finances to compare households’ projected replacement rates — retirement income as a percentage of preretirement income — with targets that would maintain their standard of living. Those households with a projected replacement rate that is more than 10% below the target are characterized as falling short. After almost two decades of kicking the tire, the NRRI continues to show that almost half of today’s working households will not have enough in retirement.

Read: ‘I was meant to be here’: The pros and cons of a 55-and-over community Some critics don’t like our model or assumptions; others say the results must be wrong because people report being perfectly content in retirement. Recently, as background for a bigger project, we looked at the happiness measures reported in the major longitudinal survey of older households (the Health and Retirement Study). This survey asks three recurring questions about satisfaction:
Please think about your life as a whole. How satisfied are you with it? Are you completely satisfied, very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, not very satisfied, or not at all satisfied?

All in all, would you say that your retirement has turned out to be very satisfying, moderately satisfying, or not at all satisfying?

Thinking about your retirement years compared with the years ju …

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