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Retirement Planning Overshadows Insurance Planning in US

By Andrew Rickard | November 28 2014 07:58AM

According to research conducted by industry research group LIMRA, 75% of Generation X and Y consumers in the United States list saving for retirement as their top financial priority.

James Kerley, LIMRA's chief membership officer, says that the financial services industry deserves to be congratulated for the way it has spread the word about how important it is to plan for retirement. However, he warns that that people may be overlooking life insurance.

"There are 58 million households underinsured, according to LIMRA research. Seven in ten families with children under 18 – that’s 11 million families – would be in financial jeopardy if the primary wage earner died," he says. "We need to do a better job of conveying the value of life insurance as part of a holistic financial strategy."

He notes that a LIMRA study from last year revealed that people tend to overestimate the cost of life insurance, believing it will be almost three times more expensive than it actually is. The data also showed that consumers procrastinate because they don't know how much insurance they need, or where they can go for more information.

"We must renew our efforts to communicate the benefits of life insurance in a way that will engage and educate consumers," says Kerley.

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