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4 Reasons Unmarried Women Are Less Confident About Retirement

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Unmarried women, both working and retired, have lower retirement confidence than their married counterparts, according to a study by Craig Copeland at the Employee Benefit Research Institute.

The study, released in September, cites multiple supporting factors for unmarried working women having lower retirement confidence. In particular, they are much more likely to have lower incomes and asset holdings and are less likely to have done a retirement needs calculation or to use a professional financial advisor.

The study defined “unmarried” women as those who never married or were divorced or widowed.

Unmarried retirees are also facing challenges. They are more likely to have low levels of savings, their expenses are higher than they expected when first retiring, and they are more likely to have retired earlier than planned.

“The survey results are a real wake-up call when it comes to the situation of unmarried women workers and their retirement prospects,” Copeland wrote. “The evidence shows that the current slate of ‘help’ solutions isn’t resonating well enough. In particular, a focus on retirement savings is not paramount for them, as opposed to meeting their current financial needs.”

In the gallery above are explanations of four reasons unmarried women are less confident about retirement, according to the study.

Ed McCarthy is a freelance financial writer who holds the certified financial planner and retirement income certified professional designations.