Seniors delaying retirement

SENIORS are delaying retirement or going back to work to ensure their nest eggs are safe, a survey of older Australians revealed on Tuesday.

A survey by Australian National University for National Seniors Australia (NSA) found half of the 3500 respondents between 50 and 85 years old had delayed their retirement date.

About 75% of those surveyed said they had cut back on spending, and 68% were concerned their savings wouldn't keep up with inflation.

National Seniors Australia chief executive Michael O'Neill said seniors were battening down the hatches and waiting for market volatility to pass.

"Unfortunately, they've been waiting since 2007 which has meant either delaying retirement, moving back into the workforce or cutting household spending," he said.

"The biggest worry is that, ultimately, they're not going to have enough in retirement."

Mr O'Neill said retirees relying on their superannuation and term deposits had seen returns fall due to dropping interest rates and the economic woes overseas.

"The key message to government is that we're seeing a great deal of uncertainty and some loss of confidence in the system," he said.

"Now is not the time to chop and change on retirement income or superannuation policy."

KEY FINDINGS:

  • 50% of workers have delayed or intend to delay retirement to protect themselves
  • Having a mortgage increases likelihood of delaying retirement by 20 per cent
  • 75% have cut back spending
  • 68% of workers say their greatest financial concern is that savings won't keep up with inflation
  • Actions of those suffering major financial losses:
  • 40% took no action
  • 35% sought professional financial advice
  • 30% moved investments (two thirds moved to cash or conservative classes)
  • 27% drew on savings

Survey conducted by ANU for NSA



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