This is the surprising generation that is most prepared for retirement

The data was pulled from 2,156 millennial workers, 1,476 Generation X workers, and 1,477 full workers from the Baby Boomer generation.


Despite the stigma that proceeds them, Millennials are actually more prudent when it comes to retirement than both Generation X and Baby Boomers-at least according to a yearly report conducted by the TransAmerica Center for Retirement Studies.

The data was pulled from 2, 156 millennial full time/part time workers, 1,476 Generation X full time/ part time workers, 1,477  full time/part time workers from The Baby Boomer generation and 59 workers born before 1946.

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There’s always a bit of ambiguity when it comes to defining generations, but the study defines each as follows:

Millennials:  1979 to2000

Generation X: 1965 to 1978

Baby Boomer: 1946 to 1964

Do Americans do enough planning for retirement?



Seventy-two percent of all workers examined in the TransAmerica Center for Retirement Studies report are eagerly awaiting retirement.

Baby Boomers are the most enthused (81%) which makes sense considering they’re the generation closes to being eligible for it, even if out of all three generations, Millennials are the most optimistic about their mortality, with 17% expecting expecting to live passed 100 years old.

According to the study, millennials actually start saving for retirement around the age of 24, which is six years earlier than Generation Xers and more than ten years earlier than Baby Boomers (the ages of which were cited at 30 and 35 respectively). The study reports,

“Given their relatively young age, Millennials are surprisingly engaged in the topic of retirement. One in five Millennials (21 percent) frequently discuss savings, investing, and planning for retirement with family and friends, which is significantly higher than for the older generations.”

Although Millennials are practicing a welcomed degree of preemptive caution, every generation falls short of the number the majority of finical advisors recommend saving for retirement. Many experts believe workers should set aside at least 10% to !5% of their income to ensure a relatively comfortable post work tenure.

As it stands the majority of Millennials roughly save a collective $23,00 a year for retirement, Generation Xers put away about $66,000, and Baby Boomers save around $152,000 in total.

More shockingly Millennials contribute more to their 401k than Generation X. On average , Millennials put about 10% of their income (this is about the same for Baby Boomers), while most workers from Generation X contribute about 8% of their income. On this the authors speculate the following, “for better or worse, some {Generation X} have taken loans and early withdrawals. Their retirement confidence is lacking and many are behind on their savings.”

General projections


Despite all of the data indexed above, more than half of workers utilized in the recent study plan to work after they reach retirement age.

Forty-one percent plan to work part-time and 14% plan to continue working full time. Millennials and Generation X make up this statistic the most (17% and 14% respectively).



For the most part, the participants occasioned merely wanting more income as a reason they will continue to work after retirement age but 72% cited health aging reasons. Forty-seven percent of that number saying, working will enable them to remain active more consistently in old age.



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CW Headley|is a reporter for Ladders and can be reached at