NU Online News Service, Feb. 2, 2005, 5:20 p.m. EST

Affluent U.S. consumers may think almost as much about paying for post-retirement health care costs as other U.S. consumers do.[@@]

Researchers at Northern Trust Corp., Chicago, have published data supporting that conclusion in a report on a survey of 1,312 U.S. residents who each have at least $1 million in investable assets. The survey participants each had an average of about $6 million in investable assets.

Although the participants had large nest eggs, researchers found that 92% of the non-retiree milionaires and 88% of the retired millionaires were very worried or somewhat worried that rapidly rising health care costs would affect their ability to enjoy retirement.

Researchers found that 96% of the millionaires under age 55 were somewhat or very worried about the cost of retiree health care.

Here are some other survey findings:

- 10% of the participants with at least $10 million in assets said they never want to retire.

- 55% of the baby boomers in the sample said they hadn’t established or updated their estate plans.

- 88% of the non-retirees and 89% of the retirees are worried about the possibility that the stock market might fall.

- Millionaires under age 55 seem to be much more interested than retired millionaires in investing in real estate.