Even when they're served with financial advice, Americans are stressing over going broke in retirement.

In a survey of 631 CPA financial planners, the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) discovered that running out of money remains the chief concern of clients planning for retirement, with 30 percent of the respondents naming it. Nearly half of the clients served by advisors in the survey, 48 percent, have voiced concerns about running out of money in retirement.

Yet only 39 percent of the advisors surveyed are concerned about clients exhausting their savings during retirement, which the AICPA suggests is evidence that even “well-positioned” clients are stressed about outliving their wealth.

In a similar survey of CPA financial planner clients fielded in 2016, 41 percent of the respondents named running out of money as a top concern.

In released comments, the AICPA argued that a strong economy and a generally positive market environment are easing client concerns about running out of money, while advisors’ feelings have remained relatively consistent.

“There’s been a relatively steady increase in asset values over the last few years,” said Michael Landsberg, CPA/PFS member of the AICPA Personal Financial Planning Executive Committee. “This, in turn, has led to stronger client balance sheets and presumably increased confidence that their money will continue working for them well into retirement.

“Of course, all of this can change, which is why it is important to revisit asset allocation, make appropriate adjustments and ensure your savings and investments will be able to fund the lifestyle you envision in retirement.”

In the 2018 survey, advisors said the other things clients were concerned about, listed in order, were maintaining their lifestyle and spending levels (named by 28 percent of the advisors), and stress from rising health-care costs (named by 18 percent of advisors).

While rising health-care costs were named by less than one-fifth of the survey’s respondents, the AICPA noted that it represented a 7 percentage point increase from the last time the survey was fielded, in 2016.

The advisor respondents listed health-care costs, market fluctuations and unexpected expenses as the top reasons clients are concerned about outliving their money, with lifestyle expenses, concern about burdening relatives and the desire to leave an inheritance as secondary reasons for clients’ stress.

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