Retirees' Uncertainty Shakes Financial Service Provider Relationships
Some retirees and pre-retirees who are opting for traditional solutions and managing their income on their own are giving the cold shoulder to some financial service firms hawking their wares.
According to Cogent Regent's "In-Retirement Income 2010" report, affluent pre-retirees and retirees were most interested in managing their retirement income through traditional certificates of deposit or bond laddering strategies implemented by themselves or through advisers. Variable annuities were second in popularity, while target payout and absolute return funds earned very little interest, the data showed.
Of the 961 respondents surveyed, not one of the 30 firms listed was chosen by more than 10% when asked to name the best financial service provider. Twenty-six percent said they didn't know which firm to name, while Fidelity Investments and Vanguard were the top two choices. Well-known brands, including Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, Edward Jones, Charles Schwab, Ameriprise and Merrill Lynch were cited by 5% or less.
Nearly half of all pre-retirees surveyed said they will continue working in retirement to augment their income while 24% of retirees rely on employment income. In all, pre-retirees expect to draw on 7.5 sources of income in retirement, and they expect to tap those resources much earlier in retirement than did their retired peers.
"While this level of confusion and indecision around retirement income products and providers is no doubt disheartening to providers, it's also an exciting opportunity for the firm or firms who eventually get it right," said Carrie Merrick, project director at Cogent and author of the study.