Starting Saturday, more than 10,000 baby boomers will reach retirement age each day for the next 19 years. That’s the good news for industries such as recreational boating, which have for a long time been looking to this generation as a lucrative source of customers.
The bad news, however, is that many boomers will reach their golden years without that large nest egg of discretionary income. The “typical baby boomer is still woefully short on retirement savings,” according to an Associated Press story this morning.
Only 15 percent of private sector workers still have company pensions, down from 39 percent in 1980, and, while 42 percent do have 401(k) accounts, many invested in the stock market and haven’t realized the returns they had hoped. Throw in the drop in home prices, and the fact that nearly three in four people file to claim Social Security benefits when they reach age 62 – locking them in at a lower amount than if they would wait – and times could be tough for some of these new retirees.
Still, given the fact that 76 million Americans were born between 1945 and 1964, this is going to be a huge pool of people that now have more time to pursue recreational activities, and there are going to be plenty that do have money to spend on products like boats. But how that will translate into increased sales remains to be seen.