NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Stocks' Performance Delays Retirement For Some

December 17, 2002

A number of Americans approaching retirement age who have lost money in the stock market over the past several years intend to keep on working, a survey by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) reveals.

  • Among workers 50 to 70 years old who say they lost money in stocks in the last two years, about one in five say they have postponed retirement because of the losses.
  • Three-quarters of those who suffered losses say their standard of living has been affected, along with their work plans or expectations about retirement.
  • Seventy-seven percent of those surveyed said they had lost money in the markets since 2000 -- with 54 percent of them experiencing losses of less than 25 percent, while 9 percent reported losses of more than 50 percent.
  • Nearly 60 percent of the respondents said they are budgeting their money more carefully because of dwindling investments.

According to the Federal Reserve, the proportion of households that own stocks directly or indirectly rose from 31.6 percent in 1989 to 48.8 percent in 1998.

Source: New York Times, "Bumpy Market Has Many Delaying Retirement, Survey Finds," New York Times, December 17, 2002


Browse more articles on Economic Issues