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NYC Hispanic Gen Xers and Boomers Financially Stressed: AARP Survey

High Anxiety HL report cover
Stressed Out by Unaffordability and Lack of Savings, One in Three Hispanic City Voters 35-50 Don’t Expect to Ever Retire

NEW YORK, N.Y. – One-third of New York City’s Hispanic Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers say they don’t think they will ever be able to stop working for money, saying high debt, housing affordability and healthcare are hampering their ability to save, according to a new survey of Hispanic city voters commissioned by AARP.

The survey also found that Hispanics will be a large part of a looming “Gen-Xodus,” with a staggering 71 percent of Hispanic Gen-X voters saying they’re at least somewhat likely to move out of New York in retirement along with 48 percent of Hispanic Baby Boomers – that is, if they even have enough money to retire. In comparison, 66 percent of the total population of Gen Xers, and 56 percent of Boomers say they may flee the city.

As Gen-Xers started turning 50 this year, AARP conducted its first city survey of the generation, High Anxiety: NYC Gen-X and Boomers Struggle with Stress, Savings and Security. AARP then created a supplemental report, High Anxiety: NYC Hispanic Gen-X and Boomers Struggle with Stress, Savings and Security, to take a deeper look at what is driving the financial stress of Hispanics in the city. The report is available in English and Spanish.

The poll of 800 city voters, split between Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers, found that while financial anxiety is high among Gen Xers and Boomers of all races and ethnicities, Hispanics in those age cohorts are feeling financial insecurities more widely.

Compared to the total Gen X and Boomer voters in New York City, Hispanic voters are more likely to experience obstacles to saving, particularly due to health care needs (60% Hispanic vs. 46% total), family caregiving (50% vs. 36%) and paying debt (56% vs. 44%).

Hispanics also report lower rates of retirement savings accounts (48% vs. 62%); and larger shares among them are extremely to very concerned about affordable housing (52% vs. 36%).

Other findings:

  • 79% of Hispanic Gen-Xers and 68% of Hispanic Boomers worry about not saving enough.
  • 76% of Hispanic Gen-Xers are either current or expected future borrowers of student debt; 77% of borrowers say these loans make it even harder to save for retirement.
  • 71% of Hispanic Gen-Xers and Boomers worry about being able to afford the rent or mortgage in the coming years.
  • One-third of Hispanic Gen Xers do not expect to receive any Social Security income at all (vs. 12% of Hispanic Boomers).

Gen-Xers are the first generation to approach retirement age with a new playbook, having lived the entirety of their working years during the rise of 401k plans and a shift away from traditional pension plans.

“These survey results should serve as an alarm that we to need find solutions that can help ease the financial pressures that Hispanic New Yorkers are facing, while also helping them to access savings vehicles through their employers that can help them build retirement savings,” said Yvette Martinez, Associate State Director for Hispanic Outreach at AARP New York.

“Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers have more in common than one might have guessed if they live in New York City,” said Beth Finkel, State Director of AARP in New York State. “Neither generation thinks they can afford to retire in the city.”

The survey, and independent research, show coming retirement savings troubles among both Gen-Xers and Boomers citywide. The average 401(k) account balance in New York was only $30,811 as of last year, according to the National Institute on Retirement Security – which found that in 2013 the average American household had just $3,000 in total assets in savings, and just $12,000 for those nearing retirement.

Among private sector Hispanic workers age 18 to 64 in the state of New York, two-thirds (67%) are not covered by a workplace retirement plan – more than any other racial or ethnic group.

Yet the survey found 60% of city Gen-Xers and 46% of Boomers who are in the labor force and confident they’ll be able to retire say they plan to stop working by age 65, revealing a retirement “reality gap.”

The survey was released at a panel discussion today in Manhattan. Assemblyman Marcos A. Crespo delivered the keynote address, and Angela Houghton, AARP senior research advisor and chief survey architect, presented the findings and joined panelists Pablo Bianchi, a Certified Financial Planner, Samantha Paz, Director of Health Advocacy at the Hispanic Federation, and Beth Finkel, AARP New York State Director to discuss the implications of the study. The panel was moderated by Angel Vasquez, Marketing Manager at El Diario La Prensa.

Contact: Chaunda Ball,

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AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of more than 37 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services.  A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin; ; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Español, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity of AARP that is working to win back opportunity for struggling Americans 50+ by being a force for change on the most serious issues they face today: housing, hunger, income and isolation. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at .

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