Projected Retirement Wealth and Savings Adequacy in the Health and Retirement Study

TitleProjected Retirement Wealth and Savings Adequacy in the Health and Retirement Study
Publication TypeReport
Year of Publication1997
AuthorsMoore, J, Mitchell, OS
InstitutionNational Bureau of Economic Research
KeywordsConsumption and Savings, Health Conditions and Status, Net Worth and Assets, Pensions, Retirement Planning and Satisfaction, Social Security

Low saving rates raise questions about Americans' ability to maintain consumption levels in old age. Using the Health and Retirement Study, this paper explores asset holdings among a nationally representative sample of people on the verge of retirement. The authors assess how much more people would need to save in order to preserve consumption levels after retirement. They find that the median older household has current wealth of approximately 325,000 including pensions, social security, housing, and other financial wealth, an amount projected to grow to about 380,000 by retirement at age 62. Nevertheless, their model suggests that this median household will still need to save 16 of annual earnings to preserve pre-retirement consumption. For retirement at age 65, assets are expected to be 420,000 and required additional saving totals 7 of earnings per year. These summary statistics conceal extraordinary heterogeneity in both assets and saving needs in the older population.


RDA ProCite field 8 : Wharton School; Wharton School and NBER

Endnote Keywords

Macroeconomics: Consumption/Saving/Pension Funds/Other Private Financial Institutions/Institutional Investors/Social Security and Public Pensions/Economics of the Elderly/Retirement/Retirement Policies/Aging/Savings/Retirement/Consumption/Wealth

Endnote ID


Citation Key5334