Cultivating financial confidence: Study finds women have more to learn when it comes to retirement planning

(BPT) – Women today are incredibly competent when it comes to juggling career, family and personal obligations. Despite feeling confident in their ability to multi-task, it appears that managing their long-term finances may be taking a back seat to short-term priorities.

Seventy-five percent of women believe having enough money to maintain their lifestyle in retirement is very important, but only 14 percent are very confident they will be able to do this, according to Prudential Financial’s eighth biennial study, “Financial Experience and Behaviors Among Women.”

“Women in our study said that not becoming a financial burden to their loved ones is one of their top financial priorities, along with making sure they don’t outlive their savings,” says Christine Marcks, president of Prudential Retirement. “However, only a third felt they were on track or ahead of schedule in planning for retirement.”

Marcks says while many women in the study were confident in their day-to-day financial knowledge, they were less confident about long-term financial planning, such as saving for a child’s education or saving enough to generate an income stream in retirement. They also pointed to a lack of disposable income to put toward their financial goals, a lack of time to spend on financial planning, and unfamiliarity with financial products as being some of their biggest hurdles.

Only 28 percent of women use employer or employer-sponsored resources for information about financial or retirement products and services. That leaves a large percentage of women who are not yet taking advantage of helpful resources that are right at their fingertips.

“Women in the workplace should familiarize themselves with company-sponsored retirement plans and benefits, and maximize their contributions to a 401(k) or other qualified retirement plan, especially if there is a company match,” says Marcks. “And since contributions to employer-sponsored plans are taken from your paycheck pre-tax, there are significant tax benefits to contributing to these plans as well.”

To learn more go to www.prudential.com/women. The site includes helpful life-stage checklists, easy-to-understand guides to financial products and services, and first-person financial accounts that provide encouragement and support.

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