Aussies not the retiring type and woefully unprepared

As much as John Howard wants Aussies to continue working longer and longer, 59.8% of Aussies say they plan on retiring from the workforce, yet more than one-in-three Australians say they have done nothing more than contribute the mandatory amount to their superannuation in order to prepare for retirement according to a survey by Talent2, Australias leading human resources outsourcing firm.

The lack of preparedness for exiting the workforce, and the rising cost of living has created a realisation amongst workers that they cannot retire at the golden age of 55 anymore, with 27.5% saying they do not plan on retiring until they are between 61 and 65 years old, according to the 1,741 respondents.

Females are far more unprepared for retirement, despite a longer average lifespan, with 62.1% of males saying they have actively taken steps above and beyond the mandatory contributions to superannuation in order to help afford retirement, compared to only 48.4% of females.

Paul Syme of Talent2 says that many workers are more concerned with keeping up with the cost of living today rather than thinking about a payout that will occur 10, 20 or 30 years from now. The promise of $100 today is far more exciting than the prospect of $100 years from now.

"Generations X (those currently aged 18-24) and Y (those currently aged between 25-34) believe they will retire before they are 60 years old yet very few have taken an active role in preparing for retirement. Many believe that if they invest in property or shares they will be set for life. However, these generations have grown up with 14 years of economic growth, and never really seen a downturn; they are not conditioned to believe that you could lose money on property or in the share market."

"19.7% of Aussies say they plan on working until they drop. This is up from 14% in a similar survey conducted by Talent2 in 2006. This rise indicates that there is a definite realisation amongst Australian that the cost of retiree-living is on the increase. It is not just health-care for retirees that is pushing the cost of living up, but retirees are living longer and better than ever before. Enjoying holidays, helping the kids out with buying a house, for example, are taking a toll on savings."