A Newport Beach investment management firm predicts many Americans are heading toward a retirement disaster and don't even realize it.
At least those folks shouldn't feel alone: many of those running big pension funds also don't know "we're headed for a retirement train wreck and it's going to get really ugly over the next 15 years."
Those are the words of Rob Arnott of Research Affiliates, where he and partner John West compiled the report that uses mathematical formulas to back their claims.
Basically what it boils down to is this: the market will not bounce back enough for baby boomers to earn back what their retirements have lost, let alone create adequate retirement savings, over the next 15 years.
As Consumer Affairs notes:
The researchers point out that the dividend yield on U.S. stocks is about 2.2%. Historically, earnings have only grown by a surprisingly low 1% a year in real, inflation-adjusted terms. And the average since 1900 is only about 1.2%, and in the last half century just 0.6%. That's not a lot. Will it get any better? Not likely, especially with the U.S. population getting older and heavily in debt.
Some generations are lucky to cash in and out at just the right time.
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This generation is not one of those, according to Research Affiliates.
The calculations of West and Arnott also do not show much of a payoff from the bond market. And their dire warning comes on the heels of the Employee Benefit Research Institute releasing a devastating report earlier this year that found one out of every three working Americans do not have any retirement savings beyond Social Security.
Add to that the fact that we're all living longer and . . . well . . .
"With tens of millions of baby boomers entering retirement over the next 15 years, the scenario could look like something out of a 'Mad Max' movie," Fred Yager observes for Consumer Affairs. "The consequences of so many people forced to live on a couple thousand dollars a month from Social Security will turn this country into a third world nation."