SOURCE: Personal Capital

Personal Capital

June 22, 2015 07:00 ET

Personal Capital Brings Sophisticated Data Analytics to Retirement Planning and Releases Findings on U.S. Retirement Savings Woes

New Data Reveals Over 50% of U.S. Adults Who Aren't Currently Retired Feel Unprepared for Retirement; Company Raises the Bar on Online Retirement Planning With Real-Time Simulations, Places Professional Tools in the Hands of Consumers

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Jun 22, 2015) - Today, Personal Capital, a leader in modern money management, announced the launch of a free online Retirement Planner that aims to help Americans gain insight into their retirement needs. The tool brings a new level of transparency to retirement planning and allows users to manage and forecast retirement savings in one convenient location. The product launches alongside the release of the results from a nationwide survey conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Personal Capital in May among over 2,000 adults ages 18 and older, which unveils the country's top retirement concerns.

Non-Retiree Savers Unprepared, Overwhelmed
According to the survey, 55% of U.S. adults who aren't currently retired say they feel unprepared for retirement, and 51% feel very/somewhat overwhelmed when thinking about the amount of money they need to save for their retirement. In fact, nearly one-third (32%) of those who aren't currently retired reported that they have nothing saved for retirement. Further, 86% of those who aren't currently retired reported that they have not yet determined how much they will need to save in total to have adequate retirement savings. Yet, many remain hesitant to seek guidance from retirement planning professionals, as only 18% of people have ever met with a financial advisor to plan for their retirement savings.

"The fact of the matter is that most adults do not know how much money they need to save for retirement, and what steps they need to take in order to get there," said Bill Harris, CEO of Personal Capital. "In today's digital age, more consumers are flocking to technology for financial advice, and rightfully so, as the most accurate insights are pulled from real-time data. Our survey revealed that 20% of those who aren't currently retired have used digital planning calculators to forecast how much they'll need for retirement, and I predict that number will continue to increase over time."

About Retirement Planner
With a growing demand for retirement planning support, Personal Capital has launched its new Retirement Planner, designed to offer the highest level of accuracy and precision for retirement planning and savings. The new tool uses Monte Carlo simulations to provide a forecast for the likelihood that a person will reach their financial planning goals for retirement, providing results for both average and poor market conditions.

To create a forecast, the Retirement Planner pulls real-time data from each Personal Capital user's account and incorporates their day-to-day financial activity. The tool responds to user activity and continuously updates to provide an estimate of retirement spending based on actual and current figures. The Planner analyzes a consumer's entire financial life, including savings, spending, investments and a variety of market assumptions such as inflation, target asset allocation and current asset portfolio.

Key Product Features:

  • Customization: Allows users to add unlimited cash flows with any type of allocation, and provides user flexibility to adjust annual savings
  • Scenario Planning: Users can enter major life events, such as weddings, college savings or buying a home to see how it could affect their chances of retirement and how they can adjust their savings rate accordingly
  • Real-Time Data & Accuracy: By using Monte Carlo simulations, account aggregation and real-time data, Retirement Planner's level of accuracy is unlike many others in the market
  • Recommendations Page: For Personal Capital registered users with over $100,000 in investable assets, the tool offers a recommendations page that provides key insights on how to adjust current and future activity to increase the likelihood of meeting retirement goals

Survey Results: Retirement Red-Alert:

  • Not Prepared: Only 24% of Americans who are not currently retired said they feel somewhat financially prepared for retirement, and only 8% report feeling very financially prepared
  • Savings Shortage: One quarter (25%) of Americans who aren't retired say not saving enough money is the reason they feel unprepared for retirement, followed by retirement taking a back seat to other financial priorities (22%) and not knowing much money is needed for retirement (22%)
  • Priority Planning: Among those who aren't retired but have begun planning for retirement, cost of living during retirement (28%) outweighs health care costs (14%), age at which they'll retire (12%) and the amount of their Social Security benefits (4%) as the most important factor when planning for retirement
  • Fee Confusion: Nearly two in five (39%) Americans who have opened a retirement savings account do not know how much they pay in fees each year
  • Family Over Financial Advisor: 30% of Americans rely on family for financial advice over a financial advisor (27%); 8% receive advice from a broker
  • Million Dollar Club: Nearly two in five (39%) of those who aren't currently retired believe they need to save $1 million or more for retirement
  • Bearing Market Volatility: The majority of U.S. adults (59%) are unprepared for a bear market, citing they have taken no precautionary steps for a potential downturn of 20% or more

About Personal Capital
Personal Capital is the modern way to manage your net worth. With free financial tools and a conflict-free advisory service, Personal Capital leads people on the path to their financial goals. The company's tools include dashboards, 401K and mutual fund fee analysis, and investment checkup. Through its paid advisory service, the company's advisors provide customized financial advice to customers, managing more than $1.4 billion in assets. Founded in 2009, Personal Capital is backed by Institutional Venture Partners, Venrock and Crosslink Capital and others, and is headquartered in Redwood City with offices in San Francisco and Denver.

Abbreviated Methodology
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Personal Capital from May 26-28, 2015 among 2,026 adults ages 18 and older, among which 1,577 are not currently retired and 909 are not currently retired but have begun planning for retirement. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact

About The Harris Poll
Over the last 5 decades, Harris Polls have become media staples. With comprehensive experience and precise technique in public opinion polling, along with a proven track record of uncovering consumers' motivations and behaviors, The Harris Poll has gained strong brand recognition around the world. The Harris Poll offers a diverse portfolio of proprietary client solutions to transform relevant insights into actionable foresight for a wide range of industries including healthcare, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer packaged goods. Contact us for more information.

Contact Information

  • Kim Paone
    Highwire PR for Personal Capital
    Email Contact: Email Contact
    Phone: 415-963-4174 ext. 9