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One-Third of People Will Retire Later Due to COVID, Study Shows

Credit: Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, Detroit Free Press via Imagn Content Services, LLC

In a study by Edward Jones and Age Wave, one out of every three Americans who plan on retiring think will now retire much later due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The study, titled “The Four Pillars of the New Retirement: What a Difference a Year Makes”, shows 69 million people say COVID made them change the timing of retirement, up from 68 million as of May 2020. The results come from surveys that were conducted between May 2020 and March 2021, with the latest in March including 2,042 adults ages 18 and older.

Figures show that the pandemic negatively affected the mental health of 41% of people. The study says 22 million people had paused their retirement savings as of December 2020, but that decreased to 14 million as of March. Health-care costs made up the top retirement concern at 66% in both May 2020 and March 2021.

Another big downside is the gender economic gap widened, the most for women of color. Women’s confidence in their retirement savings has dropped while men’s is growing. Most retirees also wish they had done a better job planning retirement overall and are now seeking more comprehensive retirement planning.

Despite a lot of negatives, there are also many positives. 29% of people have said that the pandemic has positively affected their relationships with others. Also, 56% of retirees say they see retirement as a new chapter in life, while 21% said it’s a time for rest and relaxation.

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