Gen X Approaching Retirement Crunch Time with Savings Regrets

Allianz Life study finds Gen Xers are less financially confident than boomers and millennials.


  • Only 62% of Gen Xers feel confident about being able to financially support all the things they want to do in life, compared to 82% of boomers and 77% of millennials
  • 55% wish they would have saved more money for retirement
  • 58% of Gen Xers do not have any written financial plan

MINNEAPOLIS – June 13, 2024 – Gen Xers, who are mostly in their late 40s and 50s, are approaching an important time in preparing to retire. Yet, Gen Xers are feeling less confident than ever about their finances and more worried about retirement than boomers or millennials, according to the 2024 Annual Retirement Study* from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life).

Gen Xers have concerning doubts about their financial futures. While 82% of boomers and 77% of millennials feel confident about being able to financially support all the things they want to do in life, just 62% of Gen Xers said the same. Black/African American (68%) and Asian/Asian American (67%) Gen Xers were more likely than white (60%) or Hispanic (58%) Gen X respondents to say they feel confident. 

“Gen Xers are reaching crunch time for retirement planning,” said Kelly LaVigne, VP of Consumer Insights, Allianz Life. “For Gen Xers, retirement is no longer this far off idea. That can feel stressful, but by preparing now, they can create a strategy that will help them seek their ideal retirement. The good news is that it is never too late to prepare for retirement. You can wish you started sooner, but you’ll never wish that you waited longer.”

Regrets about savings

Gen Xers say they are trying to improve their financial confidence. The most common action Gen Xers say they are taking to help meet their long-term goals is working toward paying off debt (64%). This was followed by building up an emergency fund (58%) and making financial choices to maintain or improve their credit score (55%).

However, a leading worry for Gen Xers is that they have not saved enough for retirement. The majority of Gen Xers (55%) wish that they would have saved more money for retirement. In particular, Hispanic Gen Xers (63%) wish they would have saved more money for retirement, compared to Black/African American (56%), white (55%), and Asian/Asian American (52%) Gen X respondents. Those Gen Xers  who wish they would have saved more say that expenses for day-to-day necessities (61%), credit card debt (40%) and housing debt 39% is keeping them from saving more money from retirement.

 “Saving more overall is foundational to retirement,” Lavigne said. “However, Gen X may need to take this a step further and remember that a retirement strategy isn’t just about one big final number in the bank. Once you retire, you are going to need to draw from those assets for income. A sound retirement income strategy will help use your assets efficiently and include contingencies for risks that can cause you to spend down savings faster than anticipated. You need to ensure the money lasts.”

Lacking a financial plan

While Gen Xers could benefit from guidance from a financial professional, few do. Just 35% of Gen Xers say they currently have a financial professional, compared to 46% of millennials and 54% of boomers. White (37%) and Hispanic (35%) Gen Xers are more likely to have a financial professional than Asian/Asian American (29%) and Black/African American (24%) Gen X respondents.

The majority of Gen Xers say they do not have any written financial plans (58%), compared to 52% of boomers and 37% of millennials.

Still, Gen Xers are at least increasingly thinking about retirement. Nearly two in three (63%) say one of their top three goals in the next five years is to save enough and make plans to live a comfortable retirement.  This increased from 56% in 2023. Gen Xers who are Asian/Asian Americans (68%) were more likely to say this than white (61%), Hispanic (61%), and Black/African American Gen X respondents (55%).

“The guidance of a financial professional can help alleviate some of the anxiety around their financial futures,” said LaVigne. “A financial professional can help you create a financial strategy for your future and be there along the way to guide you on how to get there.”

*Allianz Life conducted the 2024 Annual Retirement Study online survey in February and March 2024 with a nationally representative sample of 1,000 individuals age 25+ in the contiguous U.S. with an annual household income of $50k+ (single) / $75k+ (married/partnered) OR investable assets of $150k+. The study included an oversample of respondents who identified as Black/African American (416 responses); Hispanic (398 responses); Asian/Asian American (366 responses).

Guarantees are backed by the financial strength and claims-paying ability of Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America and do not apply to the performance of the variable subaccounts, which will fluctuate with market conditions.

Products are issued by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America and distributed by its affiliate, Allianz Life Financial Services, LLC, member FINRA, 5701 Golden Hills Drive, Minneapolis, MN 55416-1297. 800.542.5427

This content does not apply to the state of New York.


About Allianz Company Profile

Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, one of the Ethisphere World’s Most Ethical Companies®, has been trusted since 1896 to help millions of Americans prepare for financial uncertainties and retirement with a variety of innovative risk management solutions. In 2023, Allianz Life provided additional value to its policyholders via distributions of more than $13.73 billion. Allianz Life is a leading provider of fixed index annuities, registered index-linked annuities, and fixed index universal life insurance. Additionally, Allianz Investment Management LLC (AllianzIM), a registered investment adviser and wholly owned subsidiary of Allianz Life, offers a suite of exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Allianz Life and AllianzIM are part of Allianz SE, a global leader in the financial services industry with approximately 157,000 employees in more than 70 countries. Allianz Life is a proud sponsor of Allianz Field® in St. Paul, Minnesota, home of Major League Soccer’s Minnesota United.