Millennials Are Serious, Really Serious, About Saving for Retirement | Millennium Trust Company

Millennials Are Serious, Really Serious, About Saving for Retirement

May 3, 2019
By Millennium Trust

There is a common misconception that those in the Millennial generation – those born between the years 1980 and 1996 – don’t think long-term enough to save for their futures. This generation has delayed major purchases, such as buying a home, for example, until much later than those in the generations preceding them. Research also shows that Millennials are more interested in life experiences than diligent saving.

As VP Sales Director, Kevin Boyles, recently noted in his PlanAdviser column, there is a lot more to this story. While Millennials are making different life choices, they are actually starting to save for retirement at earlier ages than their parents (the Baby Boomers or the Gen Xers). Millennials are actually beginning to save for retirement, on average, at age 24, while Gen Xers began saving at 30, and Baby Boomers not until 35.

These findings are consistent with our own research. In our 2018 Small Business Retirement Survey, we gauged the importance of workplace savings programs for both employees and employers, and it turned out that saving for retirement is so important for the Millennial age group, that the quality of plan offered by their employer is a major factor in their career decisions.

Our survey found that as many as 9 in 10 Millennials identify a retirement savings option as an important factor in staying with their current employer, and also in considering a new employer.

Given the importance of saving for retirement – especially among Millennials who are now considered to be the largest generation in the U.S. workforce – it’s crucial for employers to take a more active role in helping their employees save.

Workplace retirement savings programs are a critical vehicle for accomplishing that. Some employers, specifically small and mid-sized employers, may think that offering a plan is either too administratively complex or too expensive, but it has become evident that this approach can put them at a disadvantage.

We also discovered in our survey that roughly half (45%) of employers did not spend any time researching potential options. Without offering competitive retirement plan benefits, it can be difficult to attract workers in a competitive labor market.

A good next step for employers in this position would be to explore the many options that may not be as well-known, but can be a good fit for small businesses. Savings options, like SEP and SIMPLE IRAs, for example, are designed for smaller businesses and typically have lower costs than traditional 401(k) plans. Payroll-Deducted IRAs are also an option.

Understanding the needs and expectations of Millennials is extremely important for both employers and advisers. The bottom line is Millennials are actively saving for retirement and are looking for more ways to do it.

At Millennium Trust, we are committed to making this process a better experience for employees, employers and advisers alike.

Visit our Workplace Savings Solutions page to learn more.


The Millennium Trust Small Business Retirement Survey was commissioned by Millennium Trust company, and conducted by CITE Research ( The online survey was conducted among 500 decision makers at companies with less than 150 employees that do not offer any type of retirement savings option, and 500 employees who are working full-time at employers with no retirement savings option. The survey, one of the first of its kind to be conducted exclusively with employers that do not offer retirement benefits, was fielded between September 28 and October 8, 2018.

The material in this blog is presented for informational purposes only. Millennium Trust Company performs the duties of a directed custodian, and as such does not sell investments or provide investment, legal or tax advice.


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