woman, man at computer Couples typically each have funds to contribute to retirement, and share the tasks that must be done—particularly if one partner is ill or neither one can handle all the chores alone. (Photo: Shutterstock)

The shopping trend of Singles’ Day may have started in China, but the trend of singlehood is global—and having repercussions that go far beyond online shopping. It could even end up threatening retirement.

If that seems far-fetched, consider this. According to a Forbes report, it reflects a broader trend of people not becoming partnered and thus doing many things alone that used to be done by couples: not just shopping, but dining out, traveling, buying homes, even career changes at which a partnered person might hesitate—in short, many commonplace activities, along with major milestones in life, are being transformed by singles who decide differently than half of a couple would.

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Marlene Satter

Marlene Y. Satter has worked in and written about the financial industry for decades.

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