Retirement readiness among workers worldwide remains disappointing with many workers not preparing for retirement, said an annual survey by the Aegon Center for Longevity and Retirement.
“The world is ready for a retirement wakeup call,” concluded a report on the survey results, which was published Thursday. The survey was conducted in collaboration with the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies and Cicero Group, a research and communications firm.
For the nine countries in which Aegon has been measuring retirement readiness since 2012, readiness remains low, although slightly improved, the report said. For 2016, the nine countries recorded a retirement readiness score of 5.5, up from 5.2 in 2012.
The survey now incorporates results from 15 countries. In 2016, the worldwide aggregate score was 5.81 vs. 5.86 in 2015, the report said. China had the largest drop, falling to 6 from 6.5.
To achieve its retirement readiness score, Aegon uses a scale that measures personal responsibility, awareness, financial understanding, retirement planning, financial preparations and income replacement. The survey now includes 15 countries. A readiness score of 8 to 10 indicates high retirement readiness; scores of 6 to 7.9 indicate medium readiness; and scores below 6 represent low readiness.
Among the original nine countries, the slight improvement “has been largely driven by positive movements in peoples' feelings about planning and saving,” said the report. “Yet it should be noted that this increase has been offset by a decline in peoples' feelings of personal responsibility for providing sufficient income in retirement.”
Among the original nine countries, the U.S. demonstrated the biggest improvement, advancing to a score of 6.67 in 2016, up from 6.51 in 2015 and 5.57 in 2012. Among the 15 countries, India topped the list with a score of 7.28 in 2016, followed by Brazil at 6.71. The least prepared for retirement was Japan with a score of 4.71.
The survey was based on online interviews with 14,400 employees and 1,600 retirees in 15 countries between Feb. 6 and Feb. 25.