MILWAUKEE (BUSINESS WIRE), December 08, 2011 - Just-released U.S. Census Bureau research provides clear evidence that people are living longer, underscoring that individuals need to broaden their understanding of what makes a complete retirement plan, according to Northwestern Mutual. With longevity on the rise, individual retirement planning needs to include asset accumulation and savings, as well as strategies for managing the personal and financial risks that can arise when you live into your 80s and 90s.

Rebekah Barsch is a Northwestern Mutual vice president - market strategy. (Photo: Business Wire)

Rebekah Barsch is a Northwestern Mutual vice president - market strategy. (Photo: Business Wire)

According to the recent Census Bureau report:

  • in 1980, there were 720,000 people aged 90 or older (in the United States)
  • in 2010, there were 1.9 million people aged 90 or older
  • by 2050, there will be an estimated 9 million people aged 90 or older.

“Imagine you stop working right now, in 2011, and you must go on to support yourself until 2036. How would you meet your needs, your wants and also handle the unexpected through another 25 years of life?” said Rebekah Barsch, Northwestern Mutual vice president – market strategy. “When you retire, this hypothetical question becomes very real, and it is only by developing a holistic retirement plan now, and incrementally and consistently working toward achieving that plan, that you can enter a financially secure retirement.”

According to Barsch, the first step is to understand what longevity means for you and how it factors into your personal retirement planning. Start by trying Northwestern Mutual’s Lifespan Calculator – www.lifespancalc.com – to learn more. This fun, online calculator considers 13 lifestyle factors including diet, drinking, smoking and stress to estimate life expectancy, using the latest information from the National Center for Health Statistics. In addition, Facebook users can download the Lifespan Calculator Facebook application to compare their life expectancy score with that of their friends.

“Understanding longevity and the other risks of retirement can be empowering. The good news is that a well developed retirement income plan can help you weather the unexpected. The key is to start planning now,” continues Barsch. “Work with a trusted advisor to align your expectations with your lifestyle and build a plan that will take you through retirement, not just to retirement.”

About Northwestern Mutual

The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company – Milwaukee, Wis. (Northwestern Mutual), the “World’s Most Admired” life insurance company in 2011 according to FORTUNE® magazine, has helped clients achieve financial security for more than 150 years. As a mutual company with $1.2 trillion of life insurance protection in force, Northwestern Mutual has no shareholders. The company focuses solely and directly on its clients and seeks to deliver consistent and dependable value to them over time. Northwestern Mutual and its subsidiaries offer a holistic approach to financial security solutions including: life insurance, long-term care insurance, disability insurance, annuities, investment products, and advisory products and services. Subsidiaries include Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC, broker-dealer, registered investment adviser, member FINRA and SIPC; the Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company, limited purpose federal savings bank; and Northwestern Long Term Care Insurance Company; and Russell Investments.

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