Investing & Retirement

What Women Need to Know



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For women approaching retirement, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is they’re likely to have long lives; life expectancies are steadily increasing. The bad news: affording it could be a real challenge.

Statistics[1] show that, on average, women age 65 can expect to live to almost age 87, compared to a life expectancy of about age 84 for men. Yet women often have a tougher time contributing toward their retirement, in part because they are more likely to take time away from the workforce to care for family members.


Here’s How You Can Plan for These Challenges:

Maximize Your Own Retirement Benefits
Take full advantage of a 401(k) at work. Any employer match is like free money! Consider funding a traditional or Roth IRA (or both). If you’re self‑employed, invest via a tax-sheltered retirement plan such as a SEP-IRA or SIMPLE IRA.


You’ve Heard This One Before: Pump Up Your Social Security
Benefits increase for each month you delay claiming Social Security between the ages of 62 and 70. A $750 benefit at 62 can grow to be $1,320 a month if you wait until age 70. If your spouse’s benefit amount will be higher than yours, the longer he/she waits to claim, the greater your survivor benefits will be[2].


Learn About Your Household Finances
With some longer-married couples, it’s not unusual for one spouse to defer to the other when it comes to overseeing investments and household finances. Don’t fall into that trap. Couples that share financial decisions generally invest more for retirement than when one spouse is solely in charge. These couples also are most likely to have created a plan built to achieve the financial security of the longer-surviving spouse.

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