1 in 5 Americans Plan to Work Till They Die

A new report reveals the (sometimes grim) reality of Americans' retirement plans, and how those plans will impact the younger generations.

1 in 5 Americans Plan to Work Till They Die Photo (cc) by aag_photos

How do you plan on spending your golden years? Traveling? Relaxing? Spoiling your grandkids?

If you’re like 1 in 5 Americans, you plan on working.

That’s right. According to a new study from The Pew Charitable Trusts, 21 percent of Americans said retirement is not an option, and they’re going to spend their golden years toiling away at work.

The report, which is based on information from focus groups and a survey of more than 7,000 households, also revealed that just 26 percent of Americans are planning a traditional retirement, where they leave their job and spend their days doing whatever they want.

More than half of those surveyed said they’ll do something else, like work in a new job.

The reasons for deciding to forgo retirement vary. Diana Elliott, research manager for financial security and mobility at Pew, told MarketWatch:

Some people really enjoy working and imagine working for a great deal longer, whereas the reluctance to retire for other people reflects their income and retirement savings shortfalls. Many people feel like all their money is going to making ends meet and having enough money to save for retirement seems like a stretch.

More than half (56 percent) of Americans said they’re financially insecure and have spent time worrying about their finances in the past 12 months.

“The most frequently reported financial worries include lack of savings (83 percent), not having enough money to cover expenses (71 percent), and not having enough money to retire (69 percent),” Pew said.

Not having an adequate nest egg makes retiring difficult. A report by the Federal Reserve Board in 2014 found that nearly 1 in 3 U.S. adults have no retirement savings.

According to 24/7 Wall St., older, retirement-age Americans staying longer in the workforce block younger generations of workers from getting jobs.

The longer these Americans remain out of work, the less chance they have to save, and the lower their chances of becoming homebuyers and, in many cases, healthy consumers. Their truncated work lives and the financial problems they cause may affect their earning power for decades and be a drag on gross domestic product.

So, as the dream of a traditional retirement dies for many Americans, the job market for younger Americans gets even more difficult.

Are you surprised that 1 in 5 Americans plans to continue working until they die? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.

Krystal Steinmetz
Krystal Steinmetz
A former television and radio reporter, I stay at home with my two young children, run a small craft business and freelance for Money Talks News. I have a BA in journalism ... More

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