In 2017, women organized and made headway toward real change, making it a hallmark year for women’s issues. The year started with the Women’s March in January and ended with the #MeToo movement spreading across the globe.1 In addition, record numbers of women considered running for public office.2
The thing is, many of the factors that may disadvantage women could also cause a drag on America’s economy. For example, challenges such as pay disparity and responsibility for the majority of caregiving (meaning less time in the workforce) can lead to lower savings opportunities for women. As a result, women are 80 percent more likely than men to live in poverty at age 65 and older, according to a report by the National Institute on Retirement Security.3
The upshot is that all women — even those who are married or in a committed relationship — need to have their own financial plan, recommends a new study from the Center for Retirement Research (CRR) at Boston College. That doesn’t necessarily mean every woman needs her own career or earnings; it simply recognizes that both spouses should be aware of the need to plan for a woman’s income sources should she survive her spouse or should the couple divorce.4
Singles and couples concerned about protecting a portion of their retirement assets may want to consider insurance options, such as annuities and life insurance. We would be happy to help assess your insurance needs; just give us a call.
It is equally important to work with an attorney to get all documents signed and in place for an estate plan. In 2016, 34 percent of U.S. women age 65 and older were widows. In total, 55 percent of women over age 65 were single.5 It behooves all women, whether single or married, to make the effort to prepare for their financial future.
1Melinda Gates. Yahoo. Dec. 16, 2017. “Melinda Gates: 2017 is the year our daughters will tell theirs about.” Accessed Jan. 8, 2018.
2John Bowden. The Hill. Nov. 4, 2017. “Women are running for office in record numbers.” Accessed Jan. 8, 2018.
3Kara Stiles. Forbes. Dec. 7, 2017. “The Unsettling Truth About Women and Retirement.” Accessed Jan. 8, 2018.
4Bernice Napach. ThinkAdvisor. Aug. 15, 2017. “Married Women Need Their Own Financial Plan: Study.” Accessed Jan. 8, 2018.
5U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. “A Profile of Older Americans: 2016.” Accessed Jan. 23, 2018.