NU Online News Service, Sept. 23, 2004, 5:43 p.m. EDT

Some U.S. consumers may be listening to talk about retirement income planning.[@@]

ING U.S. Financial Services, Atlanta, hired researchers to survey 2 samples of U.S. adults in July. One sample consisted of 800 workers over age 30 and retirees over age 50. The other consisted of 200 individuals between the ages of 50 and 70 who had $100,000 to $1 million in investable assets.

The percentage of retirees who said they had planned the process of converting their savings into income ahead of time increased to 56%, up from 32% just 2 years earlier.

The researchers also found that 33% of the employed participants said they were planning for a “retirement paycheck,” according to ING U.S.

But the researchers also found pockets of sloth and confusion: about 20% of the respondents had not even begun retirement planning, and 65% did not know what their monthly budget should be in retirement, ING U.S. says.

One source of confusion is uncertainty about Social Security benefits: Respondents who were 50 or older said they were expecting Social Security benefits to make up about one-third of their retirement income. Younger respondents expected Social Security benefits to account for only one-fifth of their retirement income.

ING U.S. is a unit of ING Groep N.V., Amsterdam.