Two-fifths (41 per cent) of U.S. employees say future generations of retirees will be worse off than those currently in retirement, according to a new survey by the Harris Poll on behalf of the Transamerica Institute and the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.

The survey, which polled more than 5,700 U.S. employees, found this sentiment was strongest among baby boomers (55 per cent), followed by generation X (51 per cent), millennials (33 per cent) and generation Z (28 per cent).

When asked about their retirement concerns, respondents cited outliving their savings and investments (39 per cent), reduction or cessation of social security (36 per cent) and not being able to meet the needs of their family (32 per cent).

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More than half (52 per cent) of employees said they expect to work past age 65 or don’t plan to retire and, among these respondents, 40 per cent said they expect to retire at age 70 or older. Almost half (49 per cent) of baby boomers said they either expect to be — or already are — working past age 70, followed by gen X (40 per cent), gen Z (37 per cent) and millennials (36 per cent).

More than two-fifths (44 per cent) of employees said they envision transitioning into retirement either by reducing their hours (26 per cent) or working in a different capacity that’s either less demanding and/or brings greater personal satisfaction (18 per cent). Some 41 per cent said their employer offers retirement transition assistance such as flexible work schedules and arrangements (23 per cent), enabling employees to reduce work hours and shift from full-time to part-time work (21 per cent) and/or enabling employees to take on positions that are less stressful or demanding (18 per cent).

“The coronavirus pandemic and turbulent economy have taken a toll on workers’ employment, finances and retirement preparations,” said Catherine Collinson, chief executive officer and president of the Transamerica Institute and the TCRS, in a press release. “Without additional support from policy-makers and employers, it will be extremely difficult for many workers to recover.”

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