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Economic, Political Fears Hurt Business Owners' Retirement Readiness

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The coronavirus pandemic and its economic effects continue to be top of mind for business owners, according to a survey released Tuesday by TD Wealth.

Related: COVID-19′s Impact on the Advisor-Client Relationship

Sixty-seven percent of high-net-worth business owners and 73% of mass affluent ones expressed concern about economic or political uncertainty when it comes to achieving their financial goals, the firm reported Tuesday.

Maru/Matchbox conducted the survey in July among 1,296 high-net-worth business owners and individuals (those with investable assets of more than $500,000) and mass affluent business owners and individuals (those with investable assets of between $100,000 and $499,000).

Eighty-seven percent of all business owners surveyed reported that their revenue had been affected by the pandemic. Forty-nine percent said they had experienced reduced operations, and 25% temporary or permanent closures.

Despite these economic effects, 85% of respondents said they had not made changes to their retirement planning as a result of the pandemic, demonstrating that business owners are staying the course through economic volatility, TD Wealth said.

Retirement Readiness

Sixty-eight percent of millennial and 58% of baby boomer business owners in the survey said they worked with a financial advisor.

Of the business owners who had a long-term investment plan, 94% said they were at least somewhat confident that their plan would lead to the achievement of their financial goals.

At the same time, just 35% of survey participants reported having a fully integrated estate plan, though 66% had a last will and testament and 44% percent had one or more trusts.

Only 12% of respondents reported that they did not have any sort of estate plan, signifying that most respondents are well-prepared for retirement with the proper estate planning.

“In a time where the world seems to shift under our feet as we speak, a financial advisor is key to help navigate economic volatility and stay on track for retirement,” Alyson Klug, head of mass affluent, U.S. Wealth, said in a statement.

The survey found that retirement confidence remained robust for high-net-worth business owners, with 94% expressing confidence that their financial plans would generate the amount of income they would need, down one percentage point from 2019.

Mass affluent business owners were less confident, with 82% reporting that they were very or somewhat confident that their financial plans will be able to provide the income needed during retirement.

TD Wealth noted that retirement savings plans constitute the highest proportion of business owners’ retirement income, followed by investment portfolios and Social Security benefits. Retirement savings and investment portfolios make up more than half of the retirement income across all survey respondents.

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