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US Boomers and Finance Market Report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Boomers and Finance market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

Key points included

  • Financial security is the Boomer ideal
  • Boomers are less diverse than subsequent generations
  • The wealthiest generation is largely satisfied, with some serious weak points

Covered in this report

This report examines the behaviors and attitudes of Baby Boomers as concerns the financial services industry. The report includes the following information about Millennials:

  • Financial habits and attitudes
  • Current financial incentives, priorities, and satisfaction
  • Attitudes toward debt, homeownership, children, and retirement

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Chris Shadle, a leading analyst in the Financial Services sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Baby Boomers are now the second-largest generation, but they still control most of America’s household wealth. Meeting the needs of this large and aging generation presents financial services companies with both opportunities and pitfalls alike Chris Shadle
Financial Services Analyst

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • Overview
          • Themes
            • Boomers are less diverse than subsequent generations
              • Figure 1: Boomer breakdown by key demographics, April 2019
            • Financial security is the Boomer ideal
              • Figure 2: Baby boomer incentives for making money, April 2019
            • The wealthiest generation is largely satisfied, with some serious weak points
              • Figure 3: Boomer retirement behaviors, by Investable assets, April 2019
            • What it means
            • The Market – What You Need to Know

              • Boomers are a more homogenous generation
                • Many Boomers plan to keep working indefinitely
                  • Questions about the future of Social Security and Medicare
                  • Boomer Demographics

                    • No longer the biggest show in town
                      • Figure 4: Share of US population, by generation, 2019
                    • Boomers in a nutshell: suburban, retired, above-average income
                      • Figure 5: Boomer breakdown by key demographics, April 2019
                    • Baby Boomers are less diverse
                      • Figure 6: Generation composition, race and Hispanic origin, 2018
                  • Market Factors

                    • Boomers plan to extend their working years
                      • Figure 7: Boomer breakdown by employment status and gender, April 2019
                      • Figure 8: Boomer plans to continue working, March 2019
                    • Social Security faces hard challenges
                      • Medicare is in dire straits as well
                        • Figure 9: Long-Range Health Insurance Income and Cost as a Percentage of Taxable Payroll, 1970-2090
                    • Key Trends – What You Need to Know

                      • Elder fraud is a big scam
                        • Student loan debt affects Boomers as well
                          • Not digital natives, but very much digital consumers
                            • Meaningful digital assistants?
                            • Trends Affecting Boomers

                              • Without a Care
                                • Retired for Hire
                                  • No Resting Place
                                  • Growing Pains

                                    • Elder fraud is a pressing concern
                                      • Student loan debt: not just a young person’s dilemma
                                        • Figure 10: Boomers’ student loan debt, by age, March 2019
                                      • Boomers are reticent to trust most financial companies
                                        • Figure 11: Most trusted financial services sectors, boomers vs general population, October 2018
                                    • What’s Working and What’s Next?

                                      • Boomers are plugged in
                                        • Figure 12: Boomer digital behaviors, by gender, March 2019
                                        • Figure 13: TD informational email, April 2019
                                        • Figure 14: Aetna Medicare facebook post, August 3, 2019
                                      • Can digital assistants offer truly meaningful guidance?
                                        • Figure 15: Aetna Medicare facebook post, August 3, 2019
                                      • AARP remains the gold standard in Boomer brands
                                        • Figure 16: AARP, eNewsletter, May 28, 2019
                                        • Figure 17: AARP and The Hartford, Insurance offer email, May 2019
                                    • The Boomer Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                      • Security is the main concern
                                        • A generation of savers (but not budgeters)
                                          • Boomers value experiences over things, want tech without sacrifice
                                            • Overall, a very financially satisfied generation
                                              • Retirement is a key focus, but planning is often lacking
                                              • Financial Incentives and Priorities

                                                • Boomers are looking for security
                                                  • Figure 18: Baby boomer incentives for making money, April 2019
                                                  • Figure 19: Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company, statement mailing, September 2018
                                                • Saving for retirement and emergencies top the list
                                                  • Figure 20: Financial priorities of Boomers, April 2019
                                              • Financial Habits

                                                • Boomers aren’t budgeting either
                                                  • Figure 21: Boomer budget habits, by household income, April 2019
                                                • Older consumers save much more
                                                  • Figure 22: Tendency to save/spend, by generation, April 2019
                                                  • Figure 23: American Express, cross-sell email, February 2019
                                              • Financial Attitudes

                                                • Boomers also value experiences over things
                                                  • Figure 24: Attitudes toward money, by household income, April 2019
                                                • Boomer women are less financially confident
                                                  • Figure 25: Gender disparities in financial attitudes, April 2019
                                                • Have their cake and eat it too: Boomers want technology without the trade-off
                                                  • Figure 26: Boomers’ views on technology, April 2019
                                                • Investing is a necessary evil
                                                  • Figure 27: Boomer attitudes toward investing and large corporations, April 2019
                                                  • Figure 28: Merrill Lynch, Investment newsletter, September 2018
                                              • Financial Satisfaction

                                                • Boomers are largely satisfied with their financial situation
                                                  • Figure 29: Financial satisfaction, aspects with highest satisfaction, April 2019
                                                • Highest levels of dissatisfaction concern debt, saving
                                                  • Figure 30: Satisfaction with key financial metrics, April 2019
                                                • Urban and rural boomers are less financially satisfied
                                                  • Figure 31: Satisfaction with key financial metrics, by area, April 2019
                                              • Debt and real estate

                                                • Loaning money to children and stress from debt are inversely correlated
                                                  • Figure 32: Attitudes toward debt, by Household income, April 2019
                                                • Among Boomers with few investable assets, credit card debt is common
                                                  • Figure 33: Prevalence of Boomer credit card debt, by amount of investable assets, April 2019
                                                • Boomers are happy with their homes
                                                  • Figure 34: Satisfaction with current home purchase, April 2019
                                              • Retirement

                                                • More money, more planning
                                                  • Figure 35: Boomer retirement behaviors, by Investable assets, April 2019
                                                • Investment firms need to reach out to Boomer women
                                                  • Figure 36: Boomer attitudes toward retirement, by gender, April 2019
                                              • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                • Data sources
                                                  • Consumer survey data
                                                    • Direct marketing creative
                                                      • Abbreviations and terms
                                                        • Abbreviations