Retirement risk rose slightly in 2020, study finds

The share of American households at risk of not being able to maintain their pre-retirement standard of living in retirement rose to 51% in 2020, up from 49% in 2019, according to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

It attributed last year’s uptick to the spike in unemployment resulting from the pandemic, countered to some extent by the stock market rally and a rise in home prices.

The center’s National Retirement Risk Index got as low as 40% in 2007. But since the Great Recession, the index has hovered around at 50%, showing that even if households work to age 65 and annuitize all their financial assets, including the receipts from reverse mortgages on their homes, roughly half of households were at risk, the center said in a report.

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“This analysis clearly confirms that we need to fix our retirement system so that employer plan coverage is universal,” the report said.

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As our second lead editor, Cindy Hamilton covers health, fitness and other wellness topics. She is also instrumental in making sure the content on the site is clear and accurate for our readers. Cindy received a BA and an MA from NYU.

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