(Dow Jones) The recession and market turmoil that accompanied it seem to have had little impact on Americans' attitudes toward retirement planning, according to a new report by the Society of Actuaries, or SOA.
As in 2007, one-third of the pre-retirees surveyed last year said that retirement, and therefore retirement planning, didn't apply to them either because retirement struck them as a financial impossibility (31%) or because they suppose they'll still want to be in the workforce (23%). Less than a third of pre-retirees (28%) planned to leave their primary occupations at age 65.
Among other constants in attitudes toward retirement since 2007 is the view of around half of pre-retirees that they are already setting aside as much money for their post-work lives as they can; the plan of about a quarter to retire before their mortgages are paid off; and the proportion (54% in 2007; 55% in 2009) that has money in stocks or stock mutual funds.
The retiree portion of the survey also points to attitudes that the recession hasn't shaken.
In 2007 and in 2009, only about 20% of retirees planned to move to smaller homes or less expensive areas. Only 8% of those asked last year planned to purchase long-term care insurance; in 2007, the rate was 9%. In both surveys approximately 75% of participants had no plans to purchase financial products that guaranteed annual levels of income for life.
Finally, and alike for pre-retirees (64%) and retirees (54%), there is a prevalent sense that retirees require financial planning only for the first few years of retirement to ensure that their assets will sustain them for the rest of their lives.
"More long-term planning is needed for individuals, and it is imperative that they look beyond 5 or 10 years, because that is the tip of the iceberg for many individuals nearing retirement or early into their retirement," said Anna Rappaport, chair of the SOA Retirement Risk Survey and owner of Chicago-based Anna Rappaport Consulting.
The SOA conducts its retirement survey every two years. This year's edition--based on 804 telephone surveys with Americans aged 45 to 80--is the fifth.
Copyright (c) 2010, Dow Jones. For more information about Dow Jones' services for advisors, please click here.