Youngest boomers open to annuities

By Brian Anderson

LifeHealthPro


Forty-somethings need your help. Badly.

And they are more open to buying an annuity than you might think.

First, the latest batch of alarming “retirement unpreparedness” statistics: More than half of younger baby boomers feel “totally unprepared” for retirement, according to a just-released survey from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America. Fifty-four percent of those ages 44-49 — the youngest segment of this country’s 78 million boomers — answered the survey with this most dire response and also expressed a greater need than their older boomer counterparts to “take more control of their financial future” (47 percent versus 35 percent), “attain more certainty and financial security” (41 percent versus 30 percent), and “reduce their financial vulnerability” (26 percent versus 22 percent).

And here’s another big one: 84 percent of respondents in Allianz Life’s Reclaiming the Future study of Americans aged 44-75, released Oct. 19, say the safety of their money matters more to them now than it did a few years ago.

The survey also revealed it is this lower end of the boomer demographic that is more open to getting help with their financial situation than older boomers.

Though only 19 percent of this group presently reports working with a financial planner (yikes!), about half said they are receptive to working with one in the future (versus 29 percent of the total group). And 95 percent of younger boomers said it was “important” or “extremely important” that their financial professional help them protect a portion of their nest egg. And while I imagine respondents weren’t thinking they were admitting they are ideal prospects for annuities, 87 percent said they want their financial professional to help them make sure they have “adequate guaranteed income in retirement.”

Yet these younger boomers who do already own an annuity actually ranked annuities highest in satisfaction (83 percent) among all financial instruments, beating out mutual funds (66 percent), stocks (63 percent), U.S. Savings Bonds (51 percent) and CDs (43 percent). Four out of five young boomers said they are happy with their annuity purchase.

So if you’re still of the mindset that forty-somethings aren’t ready for annuities, it’s time to think again.