The Scariest Thing About Your Retirement

In the interview below, Linda Shelby, a Merrill Edge executive, sits down with Brendan Byrnes to discuss the most recent Bank of America Merrill Edge Report (link opens PDF). The report is a semi-annual study that puts the behaviors of mass affluent consumers into perspective. At nearly 28 million households in the United States alone, understanding the sort of massive trends that affect these individuals can have powerful implications on your investments. Understanding paradigm shift like those discussed here are a cornerstone of Motley Fool superinvestor David Gardner's own investing strategy, and are critical to his market thrashing returns. I invite you to learn more about how he discovers his winners, just click here now to read more.

Brendan Byrnes: What's the biggest threat that the survey-takers responded with, as far as their retirement? What are they most worried about?

Linda Shelby: The biggest concern is rising health care costs. That continues to be the largest concern, at 84%, and that's what we've seen fairly consistently being the No. 1 concern.

Brendan: Wow. What else? Are they worried about maybe loss of future investments; are they worried about not saving enough? What are some other things that they're worried about?

Linda: They're concerned that they're going to...rising health care costs, but at the same time living healthier.

They're going to live a lot longer, so that nest egg that they started planning for 30 years ago may not be enough today to get them through. With health care being more expensive, but also living longer, they've got to be concerned about whether they're going to live that lifestyle that they've expected to live and plan to live.

Brendan: Yeah, I saw something the other day that said a female who's 25 right now -- some CEO said this -- can expect to live until she's 100. I don't know if that's true, but that makes you think about how people... Most people are probably not expecting to live to 100, so they're probably not going to plan for that.

Linda: That's right.

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