Millennials and Baby Boomers Agree: Pensions are a Valuable Benefit

The generational differences between millennials (those born between 1981 and 1996) and baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) have been highlighted in recent years, but one study found that their opinions may not vary as much as commonly thought – as far as pensions go, that is.

Last week, the National Institute on Retirement Security (NIRS) released a study comparing the millennial public employees’ views of pensions to those of baby boomer public employees. The results may surprise you.

Pension Benefit is a Major Reason for Choosing a Public Sector Job

  • Millennials: 74%
  • Boomers: 70%

Pension Benefit is a Main Reason Public Workers Want to Stay in Their Jobs

  • Millennials: 84%
  • Boomers: 85%

Overall Compensation Package Would not be Competitive without a Pension

  • Millennials: 33%
  • Boomers: 57%

Moreover, nearly all millennial public employees (97%) have a favorable view of defined benefit pensions, and 85% indicate they plan to stay with their current employer until they are eligible to retire or can no longer work.

Another study, this one conducted across 32 countries by asset manager Schroders, found that over a third of baby boomers were concerned about that amount they are saving, compared to 20% of millennials. Additionally, millennials are saving nearly 16% of their annual income. Baby boomers are saving 14-15%.

Researchers from Schroders suggest that this slight uptick in savings may be a result of millennials seeing press coverage of the pension crisis from a young age. Global differences also have an effect. For instance, there is a “strong aversion to debt in countries like Germany and Austria,” and some countries, like India, lack a substantial state provision, meaning people have no choice but to save more.

Regardless, it seems that the generational differences between workers may be exaggerated. One thing that millennials and baby boomers can agree on? Defined benefit pensions are a good deal.

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