Concerns about retirement rise in Bank of Ireland survey

Some 44% of those surveyed said they would find retirement financially difficult

Photograph: iStock

Photograph: iStock

 

A Bank of Ireland index tracking sentiment towards saving and investment remained unchanged in July but concerns among older people facing retirement rose sharply.

Although the savings and investment index, produced with the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), remained static, a subindex looking at attitudes to retirement fell, with the percentage of those who felt they would find it financially difficult rising to 44 per cent, the highest response since the question was first asked in November 2017.

Separately, the attitude towards savings improved with 41 per cent of those over 50 seeing July as a good time to save.

Recent comments from the European Central Bank about interest rate rises is likely to have buoyed sentiment, according to Bank of Ireland. However, 47 per cent of those surveyed felt they weren’t saving enough in July.

Investment confidence

The attitude towards saving contrasts with that toward investments with that part of the index falling in the month. The fall in confidence was attributed to ongoing trade tensions between the US and China.

“Savings sentiment improved sharply, though, driven by greater optimism among older savers, who tend to save larger amounts,” said Bank of Ireland’s Tom McCabe.

“It remains to be seen whether this marks a real turning point in savers’ confidence around what they can earn over the next few years,” he added.

Commenting on the worsening attitudes to investments, Mr McCabe noted the drift lower “had a feel of ‘sell in May and go away’ about them as we moved into holiday season”.

The index tracks household attitudes monthly from a minimum sample of 800 consumers aged 15 and above.