August 15, 2006

Many retirees don’t invest appropriately: poll

BOSTON (Reuters) - Many wealthy Americans with nest eggs of
$1 million may not have enough money for their golden years
because they do not invest appropriately after leaving their
jobs, a poll released on Tuesday shows.

The survey, commissioned by Bell Investment Advisors and
conducted by Opinion Research Corporation last month, found
that 38 percent of the 500 60-year old high net-worth
respondents said they would invest more conservatively during

This may be a mistake, however, because people tend to live
longer and often have to fund retirement for two or three
decades, Jim Bell, founder and president of Bell Investment
Advisors said.

"If people will spend 30 years in retirement they will need
enough capital to invest for the sake of growth to keep their
purchasing power intact," Bell said.

Traditionally, retirees tend to shift their investments to
safer, fixed income investments, Bell and other financial
advisers have said. However, bond returns may not be robust
enough to let portfolios grow adequately enough to fund many
years of retirement, the financial advisers said.

The poll shows that only 29 percent of the respondents
reported investing in the stock markets.

It was released at a time when many other research studies
have also shown that Americans -- who long relied on
increasingly scarce company pensions for retirement income --
face gloomy prospects because many have not saved enough to
live comfortably after they leave their jobs.

Recent figures released by Fidelity Investments, the
world's biggest mutual fund company, show that most people will
have to live on 43 percent less money after they retire.

The poll released on Tuesday also shows that many wealthy
Americans tend to decrease the size of their retirement savings
by being very generous with their children. Some 60 percent of
the respondents said they plan to pay for all or part of their
children's education, while 43 percent plan to help with down
payments on houses, the poll found.