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The Best (and Worst) Countries to Plan to Retire

Man calculates money on calculator along with piggy bank

Man calculates money on calculator along with piggy bank Planning to retire | iStock.com

Retirement comes at you pretty fast. If you don’t stop and save once in a while, you could miss it. Saving as early as possible and on a consistent basis is a golden rule in personal finance, no matter where you live. This makes sense considering the price tag attached to a multi-decade retirement. However, workers across the globe continue to struggle with retirement planning.

Saving enough money for retirement is easier said than done, regardless of the language. Only 38% of employees globally are habitual savers, meaning they always make sure to save for retirement, according to new research from Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies (TCRS) in collaboration with the Aegon Center for Longevity and Retirement. That’s down one percentage point from last year. A paltry 23% save for retirement occasionally, and 21% are not saving for retirement but claim they intend to do so. Six percent have never saved for retirement and don’t intend to. The study polled 14,400 workers and 1,600 retirees in 15 countries.

Making matters worse, respondents expect retirement to last on average 20 years. Two decades is a long time to afford, but even that estimate may fall short. Couples age 65 today have about a 50% chance that at least one person in the relationship lives to age 90. Depending on your health and family history, a retirement lasting 30 years or longer is not unthinkable.

Who’s getting ready for retirement?

Let’s take a look at the 10 best and worst countries for retirement planning, using the Aegon Retirement Readiness Index (ARRI). The index measures retirement preparedness on a scale from 1 to 10, with scores of 8 and higher considered to be high retirement readiness, scores of 6 to 7.9 as medium, and less than 6 as low. The ARRI is based on survey responses to six questions related to personal responsibility, awareness, financial understanding, retirement planning, financial preparations, and income replacement.

We’ll start by taking a look at the worst countries, and end on a better note with the best prepared countries. Surprisingly, the United States ranks better than you think.

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