Nearly half of Americans aren’t confident they’ll be able to save enough for retirement, according to the latest Wells Fargo Middle Class Retirement Study.
The top savings priority for 59 percent of the middle class is paying their bills. Saving for retirement came in as a very distant second place, with 13 percent of respondents calling it a priority.
Forty-two percent of those surveyed said both saving and paying bills isn’t even possible.
Thirty-four percent of the middle class say they’ll work until they’re “at least 80” because they won’t have saved enough for retirement, up from 25 percent in 2011 and 30 percent in 2012.
According to the 2013 study, about half of the middle class between the ages of 25 and 75 say they are “confident” they will have enough saved for their retirement. However, less than a third say they have a written retirement plan. For those who do, 70 percent describe themselves as “confident” in their future retirement versus 44 percent who don’t have a plan.
Thirty-one percent of Americans in prime retirement saving years – 40 to 59 – say they have a plan, versus 69 percent who do not. Both groups in this age range say they will need a median nest egg of $200,000 for their retirement. However, people who attest to having a written plan say they have saved $63,000, or 32 percent of their goal. Those without a written plan have only saved $20,000, or 10 percent of their goal.
A quarter of middle class Americans who earn between $25,000 and $50,000, have a written plan for retirement. The proportion that has a plan rises slightly to 29 percent for those with household incomes between $50,000 and $100,000.
However, having more income does not necessarily translate to having saved more as a percentage of the overall retirement goal. The middle class has saved between 5 percent and 8 percent of their overall savings goal, regardless of their income.