Sixty-eight percent of workers aged 55 to 65 years participating in a new survey said they are facing the reality that retiring fully or comfortably at 65 is more or less a pipe dream, with 41% planning to continue to work in retirement to supplement their income out of necessity, and 27% planning to live frugally to fund their retirement goals. 

The ninth annual Advisor Authority survey carried out online Jan. 8 to 23 within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of conducted by the Nationwide Retirement Institute; 518 advisers and financial professionals and 2,346 investors aged 18 and older were surveyed, and the research included a subset of 391 “pre-retirees” aged 55 to 65 who had not not retired, and subsets of 346 single women and 726 married women.

“Many of us watched our parents and grandparents enjoy a smooth transition to a secure retirement powered by traditional pension benefits,” Nationwide Annuity President Eric Henderson said in a statement. “Today’s investors are having a tougher time picturing that for themselves as they grapple with inflation and concerns about running out of money in retirement.”

The current reality is that 41% of 55-to 65-year-olds said they will continue working in retirement to supplement their income out of necessity, and 27% said they plan to live frugally to fund their retirement goals. 

“What’s more, pre-retirees say their plans to retire have changed over the last 12 months, with 22% expecting to retire later than planned,” according to the survey report.

The future of Social Security also is a mounting concern for respondents, although legislation before the Senate could boost Social Security benefits for older adults by changing the way cost of living increases are calculated. The bill’s chances of becoming law are uncertain, however.

Nationwide survey respondents aren’t counting on it. Forty-three percent said they are not counting on Social Security benefits as much as they previously expected to, and 27% said they expect to receive less in benefits than they previously anticipated.“The final years leading up to retirement are a critical time for making decisions that can carry life-long implications,” Henderson said. “Financial professionals can help this group gaps and create plans to address them before it’s too late.”