NU Online News Service, July 10, 4:03 p.m. – The Million Dollar Round Table, Park Ridge, Ill., argues that U.S. women are unrealistic about the amount of savings they need for retirement, and too passive when it comes to saving and investing for retirement.

The producer group hired Opinion Research Corp., Princeton, N.J., to survey 1,000 U.S. adults about their views on retirement savings.

The survey team found that nearly one-quarter of the women surveyed believed that savings of $100,000 or less would be enough to support them for a retirement spanning 20 years or more.

Fifty-six percent of the women interviewed said they planned to rely on husbands, inherited wealth, or stock market gains to support them.

Although many women interviewed were counting on the stock market to get them through retirement, nearly half said they invested mainly in conservative investments, while twice as many men stuck mostly with the most aggressive investment options, MDRT says.

Critics might ask whether promoting an aggressive investment strategy makes sense in mid-2001, when 48 of the 181 small cap growth mutual funds tracked by Morningstar Inc., Chicago, have five-year annualized returns of less than 5%.

But, over the long run, women’s conservative approach is likely to leave them with smaller balances in their retirement accounts, MDRT says.