Millennial women and men approach retirement planning and saving with very different concerns, according to a survey released Tuesday by Schwab Retirement Plan Services.
Far more millennial women than men reported uncertainty and stress related to saving for a comfortable retirement.
Asked whether having robust health or enough money for a good retirement was of more concern, 70% of women and 46% of men said having enough money concerned them more, while 54% of male respondents and just 30% of female ones said good health was the greater concern.
They expressed these concerns even though 86% of millennial men and 84% of millennial women reported being in good personal health, and 77% of men and 79% of women said they were in good financial health.
The female respondents’ monetary concerns were borne out in their anticipated age of retirement, the results showed. Thirty-one percent of millennial women expected to still be working at age 70, compared with just 22% of millennial men who thought they would be working at that age.
Schwab said this suggested that the women thought they would need more years of income to ensure a comfortable retirement.
“A variety of social and economic factors impact the way men and women view money, and our survey showed that this is already affecting the youngest generation of workers,” Catherine Golladay, senior vice president of participant services and administration at Schwab Retirement Plan Services, said in a statement.
“It is important for women and men alike to have access to and take advantage of critical resources, such as professional 401(k) advice and financial wellness programs, to help close the gap in retirement savings confidence.”
Koski Research conducted an online survey in early June of 288 U.S. 401(k) participants in the 25-to-35 age group who worked at companies with at least 25 employees. Survey respondents were not asked whether they had 401(k) accounts with Schwab Retirement Plan Services.
The survey identified a large disparity in confidence between millennial men and women regarding their own retirement preparedness. Fifty-five percent of men believed they were saving enough to retire when they wanted to, compared with 42% of women.
Schwab said uncertainty associated with 401(k) investing could in part explain this divide. Sixty-one percent of women in the survey and 44% of men reported that they did not know what their best 401(k) investment options were.
And 75% of women and 59% of men wished they had an easier way to know how to choose their 401(k) investments.
Saving for retirement is causing this generation a lot of anxiety as well, according to the survey results.