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(BPT) - Even if you’re young, newly employed or haven't yet started to save for retirement, many financial professionals agree planning is key to achieving a sense of security for your future. But a new survey shows that if you're a first- or second-generation American, a woman, African American or Hispanic employee, you may feel disconnected from the financial services industry and its benefits. One reason is that you may be less likely to have opportunities to save for retirement through your workplace — or you may feel the financial services industry is not geared toward serving the needs of you or your community.
The good news? The financial services industry and many employers are working to offer greater accessibility for all employees trying to save for retirement — even with a moderate income — and are trying to make it easier for all their employees to be proactive about financial planning, no matter when or where they begin.
The new survey conducted by Harris Poll for Empower Retirement shows that women and people of color feel underrepresented when it comes to retirement saving. In fact, 70% of all respondents said they agreed with the statement: “Retirement planning is a luxury that is not afforded to all types of Americans.” But the truth is that retirement planning is possible, no matter where or when you start. And it can make a huge difference for your financial situation down the road.
Another issue is that over half (52%) felt they would not be taken seriously as a client by a financial services company. People who feel that financial professionals will not take them seriously instead turn to family (44%) or friends (25%) for advice. While the people you know may have your best interests at heart, they may lack the financial know-how to advise you on how to save effectively for a secure retirement. Consulting a licensed financial professional can be one way to be sure that the advice you receive is based on knowledge and expertise about the best ways to save for retirement. Fortunately, access to financial professionals with specialized certifications is much more accessible than you may think.
Here are tips and resources to help you get started on your retirement planning journey.
"Anyone can benefit from professional financial advice," said Edmund F. Murphy, president and CEO, Empower Retirement. "And even if you're just beginning to save for retirement, you may reap the benefits years later. Taking full advantage of all your workplace benefits is a great place to start."
Retirement planning and saving can now benefit everyone, and can help improve your future financial outlook, no matter where you're starting from today.