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Ameriprise Survey Highlights Differences Between Sexes

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Significant differences exist between men and women in their approach to retirement, according to a new survey.

Ameriprise Financial Inc., Minneapolis, published this finding in a summary of results from a poll of 11,611 U.S. adults ages 40-75. The survey was commissioned by Ameriprise Financial and conducted online by Harris Interactive, August 4-12, 2011.

The survey finds that men continue to outpace women in planning for the financial aspects of retirement (77% vs. 72%). And though only 22% of Americans report confidence in reaching their retirement goals, men are significantly more likely than women to report this sentiment (25% vs. 19%).

More than half of men (54%) report setting aside money in their own investments (such as stocks and IRA’s) compared to 46% of women who say they’ve done the same, the report says. Men are also more likely than women to report that they’ve determined the amount of income they’ll need in retirement (31% vs. 20%).

This additional financial preparation, the survey adds, may be one reason men are significantly more likely than women to say they feel on track for retirement (41% vs. 34%) and express confidence in their overall financial futures (22% vs. 16%).

The survey notes also that women are more likely to report that family and health are taking a prominent role in their planning.

Women are significantly more likely than men to say they plan to spend more time with family during retirement (41% vs. 34%) and that proximity to family is an important factor in determining where they will retire (40% vs. 27%). They are also more likely than men to place importance on their proximity to friends and other retirees (21% vs.13%).

Women also report a greater emphasis on maintaining their health as they age.

More than half (54%) are making plans to ensure they stay healthy during retirement, compared to 48% of men. And women are more likely to rate access to healthcare options and facilities as a very important factor to consider when deciding where to retire (38% vs. 32%).

Women are also more likely to say they’ve spent time determining how they will rest and relax in retirement (25% vs. 19%) – an important part of preparing mentally for the retirement process.