As you try to improve the financial fortunes and retirement prospects for clients, consider this: Research suggests that a healthy chunk of Americans have absolutely no clue when it comes to their financial well-being.

We get an almost daily deluge of studies related to American financial literacy, confidence in the economy and confidence in retirement planning, but a piece from Northwestern Mutual seriously lowers the bar.

The new Planning and Progress Study illustrates what we probably know (or experience in our own lives), that being that 45 percent of Americans have no financial plans at all.

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