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Millennials are more confident about their retirement savings than other generations, new survey shows

Millennial woman at homeLuis Alvarez/

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While millennials have faced criticism in the past for their financial habits, they are more confident than other generations about their retirement savings.

According to new data from New York Life's Wealth Watch survey, millennials are more certain their savings will last in their golden years than Gen X and Gen Z. 

The survey asked 2,200 adults across the three generations how they felt about their retirement plans, whether they expect their money to last, and how confident they feel that they'll be able to retire when expected. Interestingly, the generation that's closest to retirement — Gen X — didn't come out on top. 

Instead, millennials did — they reported feeling most confident that they'll be able to meet their retirement goals.

  Millennials are more confident than Gen X that they'll be able to retire as planned

More millennials than Gen Xers are confident they'll be able to retire when they're ready. According to the data, 68% of millennials say they're confident that they'll be able to retire at their desired age, compared to 62% of Gen X. 

Gen X has long been lagging in retirement savings, even though they're the next generation to retire. In 2019, Insider's Tanza Loudenback reported that only 50% of this generation had a retirement account, and only 36% were actively saving, according to a study by Insider and Morning Consult.

Millennials, much farther from retirement, weren't far behind in savings, which is significant considering they have decades before the typical retirement age. About 54% of millennials didn't have a retirement account, according to the data. 

Millennials are more confident than other generations that their money will last in retirement

While 45% of millennials expect that their retirement funds will last them for the rest of their lives, only 35% of Gen X and 33% of Gen Z said the same. 

Millennials have been saving for retirement in part because they expect to need it more than Gen X. Data from Wells Fargo shows that while Gen X counts on Social Security and pensions to fund their retirement, millennials are planning to be more self-sufficient

There are ways to catch up if you're not feeling confident

If you're feeling unsure about retirement, it's always possible to bulk up your savings.

To make sure you're getting the most out of your money, make sure it's properly invested, financial planner Jovan Johnson previously told Insider. He also suggests checking to make sure you're getting your full employer match if you're able, along with depositing tax refunds to an IRA.

Making sure that you've kept up with any previous employer's accounts is also essential. If you have old 401(k) accounts, rolling them over to an IRA can help you stay on top of them, invest them properly, and save more. 

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