For all the buzz right now about gray divorce, it turns out that getting married or staying married is good for your bottom line during retirement. The flipside is that Baby boomers who never married stand a greater chance of being broke during what ought to be their golden years.
That’s the upshot of a report issued last week by GAO, the research arm of Congress. “Trends in Marriage and Work Patterns May Increase Economic Vulnerability for Some Retirees” which uses 2012 data to estimate the poverty rates for people 65 and over, based on marital status and sex.
The poverty rate increased drastically as seniors lost their spouses. It rose from 4.6% for married people, to 13.5% for widows and widowers. But it was even higher 19.4% – for those who never married. Gender-based differences were most profound among divorcees: For men the poverty rate was 10.9%, while for women it was 18.1%.