Employer Benefits Can Help the Senior Labor Force Save More
The benefits won by workers during the Labor Movement in the 19th century are still improving the lives of American workers today. This Labor Day, learn more about important employer benefits that can help senior workers save more.
Updated on Aug 30 2019
September is here, the weather is turning cooler, football is on TV, and we are kicking it all off with Labor Day. Since 1894, the first Monday in September has been set aside to pay tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers. The benefits won by workers during the Labor Movement in the 19th century are still improving the lives of American workers today. This Labor Day, learn more about important employer benefits that can help senior workers save more.
The Senior Workforce in America
A recent report from United Income found that the older generation is changing the face of the workforce in America. As of February 2019, more than 20 percent of adults over the age of 65 were either working or looking for work, compared with 10 percent in 1985. The study used data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which estimates that by 2024 nearly 13 million Americans over the age of 65 will be in the workforce.
The study noted that more workers with college degrees are staying in the workforce past 65 (53 percent in 2019) and the average income of retirement-age workers increased by 63 percent, even after adjusting for inflation. The last time 20 percent of people 65 and older were working was in 1962.
Senior Workers Saving More with Employer Benefits
There are several reasons why retirement-age workers are forgoing retirement including increased longevity and healthcare, but one of the most compelling reasons is increased income and the opportunity to save more for retirement. As companies become aware of the benefits of hiring seniors, their benefits packages are expanding to meet senior needs.
Employer benefits that were hard fought in the Labor Movement are still paying dividends today, literally - especially for seniors. Most companies offer retirement benefits which include a matching contribution to a 401k plan. In 2019, the maximum contribution to a 401(k) is $19,000, plus an additional $6,000 contribution for workers 50 and over.
Experts recommend that workers save at least 15 percent of their pretax income each year. This number can sound unreachable, but it seems much more attainable when it includes employer matches. Experts also recommend that workers max out their contributions, but if that is not possible, they should contribute enough to get their employers to match their personal contributions, doubling their 401(k) contributions while still having a paycheck that covers living expenses.
In addition to enticing 401(k) plans, some companies offer senior workers appealing health care benefits like paying medical premiums, free medical and prescription premiums, and the opportunity to purchase additional insurance plans at group rates. These healthcare costs can add up over time and take a toll on retirement plans, making healthcare employer benefits incredibly enticing.
Get Expert Advice For Your Retirement Plan
As the workforce ages and companies adapt to the needs of an older workforce, it’s important to understand senior benefits for workers.
If you are approaching retirement, consider contacting a fiduciary financial advisor who can help you conduct a comprehensive financial assessment. This assessment will help you set goals and understand what retirement funds you need to meet those goals. Deciding when (and how) to retire is a major life decision, and it’s worth having a financial expert weigh in earlier in the process, when you still have time to make important financial adjustments.
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